You may have been there. You may have cracked your tooth on a piece of hard food. Your filling that you’ve had for ages might have fallen out. Or you may have lost a tooth from playing football or an accident. Now you’re living in agony because of the discomfort and inconvenience that these problems may be causing. You can rest assured as today’s dentistry is offering multiple solutions for you to choose from. Two popular and effective options include an implant or a crown. This article from Sydney Dental will cover dental implant vs. crown to help you with your decision making.

dental implant vs. crown

Apart from the similarities, there are differences between these two tooth restoration methods. Additionally, one method may benefit you better than the other so there is more to choose between a crown and an implant than just your personal preference and budget. Whatever the case is, always make sure to consult with a certified dental care provider to make the best treatment choice.

Dental implant

1. What is a dental crown? dental implant vs. crown

The use of a dental crown on a damaged tooth is like wearing a nice hat to conceal a poor haircut. It is a fixed porcelain piece that is attached on the affected tooth (damaged or decayed) for two purposes. One benefit is that a dental crown offers a new shiny look for the tooth by hiding the damaged or decayed part. Another is it helps keep the problem of the tooth from deteriorating and the pain away.

For it to look, feel, and function like your natural teeth, the dentist will take impressions of your tooth to custom make the crown. This is done so that the crown is well-fitting and secured in place. The tight seal prevents bacteria from entering under the crown to keep the covered tooth from any extra damage.

A dental crown is used alone to conceal ill-shaped, slightly damaged, or discolored teeth. It can also be used as support to attach a dental bridge next. A dental crown can be the last piece to be attached in a dental implant treatment to restore a lost tooth. It is to be bound on top of the abutment and is the last step of the treatment.

Why do people need it?

All in all, a dental crown can serve the following purposes:

  • Prevent breakage in a weak tooth or keep it together when there are cracks;
  • Restore a broken or worn down tooth;
  • Support and cover a tooth with a large filling;
  • Secure a dental bridge;
  • Cover a discolored or misshapen tooth;
  • Cover a dental implant;
  • Cover a tooth that has gone through a root canal treatment.

2. What is a dental implant?

Generally speaking, dental implants play as the substitute roots for your teeth. They bring patients a strong base for permanent or detachable false teeth that are designed to match your original ones.

A typical dental implant usually consists of:

  • A dental implant body, surgically placed in the jawbone to substitute for the tooth’s root.
  • A dental implant abutment, bonded to the implant body via the abutment fixation screw that goes across your gums into the mouth. 
  • An ceramic tooth, which is attached to the abutment on top, making the implant one whole functional piece.

Why do people need it?

Those who have lost one or more teeth can find dental implants helpful. A dental implant is also needed if you have missing teeth as a result of:

  • Tooth decay, also called cavities;
  • Breaks in the tooth roots;.
  • Teeth grinding or clenching, also known as bruxism;
  • Periodontal conditions;
  • Injuries to the face;
  • Innate tooth loss (born with some teeth missing).
dental implant vs. crown
dental implant vs crown

3. How to choose between dental implants and dental crowns?

There is no one-size-fits-all solution to all dental problems. As you are weighing the pros and cons of an implant and a crown, many factors are to be taken into consideration. These include your dental health, age, your budget, and the amount of time on your hands. Read on and learn more about these factors in detail.

3.1. Time and finances

As a surgical procedure, a dental implant is an invasive treatment that may take patients multiple months to complete. A crown may be needed to be placed on top of the implant. 

On the other hand, it only requires one or two visits for a dental crown, depending on the particular type.

Regarding the expense, a dental implant is typically more costly than a dental crown. Therefore, cost is something a patient needs to consider carefully if they opt for an implant surgery.

3.2. Preservation of original teeth

Most of the time, a person can save a decayed or damaged tooth by receiving a dental treatment called a root canal, which is almost always a more optimal choice than keeping that particular natural tooth.

A dental crown won’t require the tooth root to be removed as it is only placed on top of the tooth. On the other hand, preparation for a dental implant involves removing all the tooth pulp to make space for the implant.

3.3. Durability

It is a fact that a dental implant is more expensive than a dental crown. That said, the financial aspect is just one short-term characteristic. 

Dental implants are the most durable tooth replacement these days. With thorough maintenance, these can last all your life. Nonetheless, the tooth restoration on top of the implant may need a substitute at some time as dental crowns and bridges typically last for about 15 years while dentures can be at least 7 years. 

Similarly, a solo dental crown needs to be replaced after some time, most likely every 10 to 15 years. The life of a crown depends on how much wear and tear it is exposed to and the maintenance as well as habits of the user. Bad habits that may make your crown less likely to last longer include:

  • Teeth grinding;
  • Chewing on hard foods;
  • Nail biting;
  • Opening packaging with teeth;

3.4. Candidacy

Although dental implants are getting more and more popular as a tooth restoration treatment, not everyone is eligible for it. Only those whose health is good enough to receive a normal tooth extraction or dental surgery can be a candidate for dental implants. They should also have:

  • Healthy gums;
  • Enough bone for the implants to be bonded to;
  • Decent oral hygiene;
  • Frequent visits to the dentist.

Thorough examination needs to be done before dental implants for patients who:

  • Are chronic smokers;
  • Have out-of-control chronic diseases, like diabetes or heart problems;
  • Are undergoing radiation therapy in the head or neck.

Whatever the case is, always consult with your dentist to see if dental implants are a good fit for you.

As for dental crowns, patients are always a good candidate as long as they have no issues rather than cosmetic problems. If you have a cracked or broken tooth with an intact tooth root, you can totally receive dental crowns. However, if the tooth is decayed, a treatment needs to be done before attaching a dental crown as the tooth may continue to decay under the crown.

dental implant vs. crown
dental implant vs crown

4. Is the procedure for a crown or implant painful?

The procedure used to attach a crown should be painless because the dentist will use a numbing medication on the affected area. However, some soreness following the procedure shouldn’t be a cause for concern. It should go away on its own after some time.

A dental implant is in essence a minor surgery. Similar to any surgical procedure, it is not strange for patients to experience some degree of discomfort after surgery. They can take nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), like ibuprofen for pain and swelling relief following the procedure. However, similar to a crown procedure, you shouldn’t feel any pain during the surgery with the help of local or general anesthesia.

5. A word from Sydney Dental

Hopefully this read has provided you with a good idea of how a dental implant and a dental crown compare so you will have an easier time making your decision. However, if you are still unsure of which treatment to go with for a new unforgettably stunning smile in your particular case, do not hesitate to reach out to us. We are at 499-501 Ba Hat St, Ward 8, District 10, HCMC looking forward to your visit. You may also call us at (028) 3504 9440 for a free no-obligation comprehensive consultation. Your pretty, shiny smile is 100% guaranteed at Sydney Dental.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *