How Long Do Dental Crowns Last?

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Even when teeth are severely damaged, dental crowns can be an incredibly effective method of restoring the teeth. Because dental crowns are primarily intended to help preserve the teeth, it is important for them to last as long as possible; ideally, they will be considerably more durable than the teeth they are designed to protect. Depending on the material used, and the expertise of the dentist who places your dental crowns, your dental crowns should be expected to last several years, and possibly a lifetime. As with any purchase, many factors will contribute to how long your dental crowns can be expected to last. Because your teeth are something you use every day, unlike many other things you may purchase, dental crowns are likely to undergo a substantial amount of stress. It is impossible to determine exactly how long your dental crowns may last, but it can be helpful to consider the many factors that may influence its possible lifespan. Generally speaking, the average lifespan of a dental crown is 10 to 30 years. This takes into consideration crowns that last a lifetime, as well as crowns that crack shortly after being placed, which is usually the result of a mechanical flaw or some sort of abnormal stress, like biting something excessively hard. Because of the number of factors that may contribute to the premature failure of a crown, most insurance companies are usually willing to cover a replacement after 5 to 8 years. In reality, however, your crown is unlikely to fail within that time span, making crowns a solid financial choice in most cases.

The most important factor in determining the possible lifespan of a crown is the current condition of the tooth you are planning to crown. For this reason, your dentist will be your best resource in trying to determine the expected lifespan of your crown. Some teeth can’t effectively hold a crown. In these cases, you may want to look into a dental implant or a dental bridge. Some crowns don’t fit properly because of their construction, so make sure to talk to your dentist about the dental laboratory they use to manufacture their crowns; a reputable laboratory can make a world of difference when it comes to crafting a properly fitting crown. What you do will also have a significant impact on the lifespan of your crown. Maintaining excellent oral health habits will help prolong the life of your crown, as the natural teeth that support crowns may decay if neglected, which will weaken the placement of the crown. Be sure to brush twice daily with a soft-bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste, and clean between the teeth daily with floss or a water pick. Other destructive habits, like chewing or biting ice or hard foods, can lead to a prematurely broken crown. If you know that you grind your teeth in your sleep, be sure to tell your dentist, who can provide you with a protective mouth guard that can help prevent damage to both natural and crowned teeth. Dental crown materials also vary widely in durability, as well as in appearance. While porcelain will match your natural teeth, it isn’t as durable as its metal and dental alloy counterparts. These metal and dental alloys, on the other hand, are very durable, but they don’t match the natural teeth. Talk to your dentist about how to strike a balance between appearance and durability, and select the material that will work best for your specific situation and your needs. Despite the potential risks that might damage your crown, dental crowns remain one of the most effective ways to restore a damaged tooth.  Talk to your dentist to learn if dental crowns will work for your needs.

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