How Long Do Dental Crowns last?

Dental crowns, often referred to as caps, are essential restorative solutions in dentistry. These versatile prosthetics serve multiple purposes, from strengthening damaged teeth to improving their appearance. Crafted from various materials like porcelain, metal, or a combination, crowns are customized to fit seamlessly into the patient's natural smile.  The longevity of crowns, a common concern, is influenced by factors such as material choice, oral hygiene practices, and the expertise of the dentist. The lifespan of a dental crown varies based on several factors. On average, a well-maintained and properly fitted dental crown can last anywhere from 10 to 15 years, and in many cases, even longer. However, this timeframe is influenced by various considerations.

Despite the intricacies, the placement of dental crowns is a routine and minimally invasive procedure, contributing to both function and beauty in the world of dental care.

What Affects the Lifespan of a Dental Crown?

Material Selection:

Dental crowns are crafted from various materials, each with its own set of advantages and considerations. Porcelain-fused-to-metal (PFM), all-ceramic, and metal crowns exhibit different levels of durability. While advancements in dental materials contribute to improved longevity, the choice of material plays a crucial role. 

Oral Hygiene Practices

Regular and thorough oral hygiene practices significantly impact the lifespan of a dental crown. Proper brushing, flossing, and routine dental check-ups help prevent issues such as decay and gum disease that can compromise the integrity of the crown.

Occlusal Forces

The forces exerted during biting and chewing can affect the longevity of a dental crown. Individuals who grind their teeth (bruxism) may experience a shorter lifespan of crowns. The use of a night guard, as recommended by a dentist, can mitigate these effects.

Tooth Location

Crowns placed on molars, which endure more significant biting forces, may experience greater stress compared to those on front teeth. The location of the crown in the mouth can influence its longevity.

Dentist’s Expertise

The skill and expertise of the dentist performing the crown placement are crucial. A well-fitted crown, with proper alignment and bite, is more likely to withstand the test of time.

The Need For a Dental Crown

A dental crown, often referred to as a cap, is a prosthetic device designed to encase a damaged or weakened tooth. The primary purposes of dental crowns include the following:

Restoration of Strength:

Dental crowns are employed to reinforce and restore the structural integrity of a tooth that has undergone significant decay, fracture, or damage.

Protection:

Crowns provide a protective covering, shielding vulnerable teeth from further deterioration or potential fractures.

Cosmetic Enhancement:

In addition to functional restoration, dental crowns are used for cosmetic purposes, improving the appearance of discolored, misshapen, or poorly aligned teeth.

Support for Dental Procedures:

Crowns are often used as a supportive element for dental procedures such as root canals, providing stability to the treated tooth.

What Happens If A Crown Falls Off?

While it is relatively uncommon for a dental crown to fall off, it can happen due to factors such as decay, trauma, or an improper fit. If a crown does fall off, it is essential to take the following steps:

Retrieve the Crown:

If possible, retrieve the crown and inspect it for damage. Do not attempt to force it back onto the tooth.

Temporary Protection:

To protect the exposed tooth, consider using dental wax or an over-the-counter dental cement until you can see a dentist.

Contact Your Dentist:

Schedule an appointment with your dentist promptly. They will assess the situation, address any underlying issues, and either reattach the crown or recommend a replacement.

Avoid DIY Fixes:

Refrain from using household glues or adhesives to reattach the crown. These can cause further damage and complicate the dental restoration process.

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