Various materials can be used for dental crowns, depending on the location in your mouth, your budget, your treatment goals and desires, and your dental health. Gold or precious metal alloy crowns, porcelain fused to metal crowns, all-ceramic crowns, and zirconia crowns are the most common.
Gold or Precious Metal Crowns
Dentists traditionally used gold or another precious metal to make crowns that cover back teeth or where space is limited. It is a solid and long-lasting material, and gold is gentler on the opposing teeth because it does not wear down tooth enamel. The gold is polished to a high sheen and looks reasonably attractive but can be pretty visible. The current price of gold and the amount required to make the crown usually determine the price of a crown.
Porcelain Fused to Metal Crown
Another traditional option is a porcelain fused to metal crown, which has been around for a long time. The crown has tooth-colored porcelain that covers its precious metal alloy substructure. The result is a reasonably good-looking crown that is hard-wearing.
However, you don’t always get the best aesthetics with a porcelain fused to a metal crown as the metal must be covered with an opaque material that can sometimes shine through the porcelain. Another potential problem with this type of crown is that the margin or edge of the crown can appear darker because the porcelain is thinner, and a black line around the edge of the crown is not uncommon, especially if the gums recede.
All-ceramic crowns are a popular and highly aesthetic option. They don’t contain any metal, and we can make them from a variety of ceramic materials. They are durable and translucent, which makes them an excellent choice for front teeth where cosmetic appearance is important.
Dentists use zirconia to make another type of all-ceramic crown, which is exceptionally durable and long-lasting. The crowns are milled and heat-treated to prevent fracturing. When it comes to restoring a back tooth, a zirconia crown is an excellent choice. If you clench and grind your teeth, you can have a special type of zirconia crown that will not harm the opposing teeth.
When you see your dentist, they can discuss all possible options with you and probably show you samples of each. They can also provide more information about the costs of each option.