How Long Do Crowns Last?

Nov 27, 2022 | Crowns

How Long Do Crowns Last

Dental crowns are a treatment option used to help stabilize and save damaged teeth after extensive decay, injury, and a root canal. But how long can you expect your dental crown to last? While the average length of time a crown will last depends on the type of dental crown you choose to have put in place, it can still vary greatly from person to person and your oral hygiene routine can make a big difference in just how long your dental crown will last.

Key takeaways

  • Explore the different types of dental crowns used in dentistry and how these differences can affect longevity
  • Understand how your oral hygiene routine plays a vital role in the health of your crown
  • Learn how to extend the life of your dental crown
  • Understand when a dental crown needs to be replaced

How long do dental crowns last?

While the average lifespan of a dental crown is around 10 years, the type of crown, as well as how you care for it, can allow crowns to last decades. Here we take a closer look at the different types of crowns available and how the different materials can affect the longevity of your crown.

Porcelain Fused to Metal (PFM)

Porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns are one of the most popular crown options as they are also the most natural-looking crown options. This makes them a great option for front teeth. On average, this type of crown can last 5-15 years but the porcelain is prone to chipping and the metal may show if you experience receding gums.

Zirconia

Zirconia crowns are a type of ceramic crown made from zirconium dioxide. This material is similar to titanium, very strong, and resistant to fractures and chips. They are considered the strongest available crowns and can endure extreme bite forces. These crowns are designed to last at least 10-15 years, but often much longer.

Lithium Silicate

Lithium disilicate crowns are made from a combination of lithium and silicon and have quickly become the most used dental crown options. They are very strong and adhere well to the remaining tooth, with most lasting 15 years or more.

Gold

Gold has been used for making crowns for well over 100 years. It is designed to fit the tooth well, is extremely strong, and is resistant to chipping. While gold crowns can last for decades, they are very unnatural in appearance and are typically only used for back molars so that they do not affect your smile.

Factors that affect the crown’s lifespan

Many different factors can play a role in the health and longevity of your dental crown. While we have discussed the different materials used to make crowns and how they can affect longevity, other factors must be considered. 

    • Oral hygiene: Oral hygiene and quality dental care play a critical role in the longevity of your crown. A poor oral hygiene routine can cause tooth decay to develop in the natural tooth, underneath the crown, and result in a loss of tooth structure and the ultimate loss of the crown.
    • Bruxism: Regular teeth grinding or clenching of your teeth can put undo pressure or wear out the surface of your crown, often resulting in chipping or breaking.
    • Eating habits: Eating hard food items, such as ice cubes or hard candies, can slowly break down the surface of your crown, resulting in breaks or chips.

Reasons for a crown replacement

While a break or damage to a tooth is an obvious reason to consider crown replacement, there may be other times when you consider replacing your existing crown. These can include:

  • Tooth pain: While you may not notice anything wrong with your current dental crown, pain in the tooth can be a sign of underlying dental decay in the natural tooth. When this occurs, a new crown is necessary.
  • Instability: If your crown feels loose when eating or you can see it visibly moving in place, chances are there may be decay in the underlying tooth and your crown needs to be replaced.
  • Aesthetics: If your neighboring teeth have changed color or you have had dental whitening, your current crown may no longer look natural in your mouth, and you want to replace it in order to make it more aesthetically pleasing.

Tips to extend the life of your crown

If you are hoping to extend the life of your crown, there are some tips you can follow that will do just that.

    • Follow a good oral hygiene routine that includes brushing twice a day, flossing, and having a dental cleaning every six months in order to ensure your crown receives proper care.
    • Attend regular dental exams. Regular dental examinations allow your dentist to identify potential concerns before they affect the lifespan of your crown.
    • Avoid eating hard foods, such as hard candies, or chewing ice.
    • Your teeth are not tools. Avoid using your teeth to open bottles or chew on items like pencils.

When should you replace your dental crown?

Dental crowns are designed to last between 5-15 years but can last for much longer when taken care of. However, aside from age, certain signs may show that it is time to see your dentist for a replacement crown. These can include:

    • Receding gum line
    • Pain in the affected tooth
    • Swelling in the gumline around the affected tooth
    • Noticeable chips or cracks in the crown

Maintaining oral health and a healthy crown

Following a regular oral hygiene routine that includes regular dental check-ups is a great way to help extend the life of your dental crown. With good oral care and a well-placed crown, you may find your crown could last your lifetime. However, if you experience any of the signs and symptoms listed above, it may be time to talk with your dentist about a replacement crown.

A focus on keeping your crown healthy

At Soundview Family Dental, our focus is on helping you achieve and maintain quality oral health. This includes regular checkups, cleanings, and inspections of your current dental crowns. If you are experiencing any of the signs above and feel your crown may need replacement, our team is here to help. Contact us today to schedule an appointment and let us help you restore your beautiful smile.

Eric Kitts, DDS

Eric Kitts, DDS

Owner @ Soundview Family Dental

Born in Seattle and raised in Puyallup, Dr. Eric Kitts received his undergraduate degree from Washington State University and his DDS from the University of Washington School of Dentistry. Dr. Kitts began practicing dentistry in 2000, at his office in Richmond Beach. In 2011, Dr. Kitts built a brand-new, state-of-the-art dental facility located in the heart of downtown Edmonds.

Book with us today!

Are you unhappy with the appearance of your teeth and refuse to show the world your beautiful smile? Has discomfort at the dentist kept you from receiving dental work that will give you a reason to smile again?

At Soundview Family Dental in Edmonds, WA, we understand that not everyone likes the dentist. Our team of caring professionals works with you to ensure that you feel comfortable from the moment you walk through the door. Specializing in cosmetic and restorative dentistry, Dr. Kitts and his team work hard to preserve your natural teeth and give you back a smile you can be proud of.

Contact today to schedule an appointment and let our team deliver a beautiful, natural-looking smile you can be proud to show off.

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