How Much Does a Crown Cost?

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How much does a crown cost, and what are the different variables that can influence the cost of a dental crown other than insurance and material?

Dental crowns are one of the best medical interventions you can have to make your smile perfect and your teeth look better. While a lot of people can correct smaller misalignments with clear aligners, there are some conditions such as a missing or broken tooth, that require further reconstruction or dental crowns.

But, how much does a dental crown cost, and is this the right treatment for you?

Keep on reading to find out all the details, and make an informed decision by the end of the article. You will discover the different types of dental crowns and the average cost of dental crowns depending on various factors.

How Much do Dental Crowns Cost?

The average cost of dental crowns is between $1,000 and $3,500 per tooth.

This huge price variation depends on many factors including the types of dental crowns, location of the dental office, and additional dental fees for work on your teeth.

Typical costs of dental crowns might sound expensive, but on the other hand, this is the best and most efficient way to have your damaged teeth fixed. In addition, depending on the type of crown you are getting and the dental insurance you have you can expect lower prices.

In addition, some dental schools have amazing offers for patients who are willing to let students practice on them under professional supervision.

What Does Dental Crown Cost Cover?

The procedure of getting dental crowns is complex and individual for each patient. Depending on the current state of your natural teeth and gum line you can expect different suggestions and treatments from your dentist.

The final cost of dental crowns will include the following procedure:

Preparation

Your dentist will evaluate your oral health, order x-rays if needed, and prepare the damaged tooth for the crown. This process includes local anesthetics and a dental crown procedure to shave down the natural tooth so the cap can be placed over it.

In case some teeth are missing your doctor might recommend a dental implant or dental bridge to complete the look, while some patients require minor gum surgery for the best results.

Your doctor will have all the information you need on general oral health topics, so make sure you choose the best dental care available in your area.

Taking the mold

Once the tooth is prepared your dentist immediately takes a mold of the tooth to make the perfect tooth crown that will fit you. Considering the new dental crown needs to look like your natural tooth many dentists pay special attention to this part of the procedure.

Temporary crown

Depending on the dental procedure and the crowns you need, you might have to wait for a while for the permanent crown to be complete. To avoid damaging the tooth structure and for the aesthetic look while you wait your qualified healthcare provider will place a temporary cap over the tooth.

This temporary crown will be removed once the dental lab finishes your permanent dental crowns.

Permanent crown

Permanent teeth or dental crowns are glued to your natural teeth with strong bonding dental cement. This ensures the dental crowns stay in place and last for years.

Additional Costs

While most patients will get the previously mentioned procedure the cost of dental crowns can be affected by additional work you might need. This can include root canals, repairing of severe decay, or additional x-rays.

Does Insurance Coverage Apply to Dental Crowns?

Dental crowns cost quite a lot, and many people wonder if dental insurance coverage applies to this dental procedure. The answer to this question depends on the dental insurance you might have, your maximum annual coverage limit, and the dental plans you have.

Most of the time, dental insurance will cover part of the dental crown cost if it’s considered to be a medical necessity.

If you are not sure about the policy your dental insurance has you can always call customer support and ask a few questions. Don’t be surprised if you have to opt for low-cost dental crowns or have to switch to other qualified healthcare provider on the insurance coverage list.

Is Getting a Crown Worth It?

Yes, a dental crown can be a perfect solution if you are looking for a way to improve your smile and teeth. While the price might be too much for some patients, dental insurance and special offers at the dental clinics should help with price reduction.

If you’re unsure of whether to get a crown or a filling, read our guide to crowns versus fillings here.

Different Types of Dental Crowns Costs

There are a few different types of dental crowns on the market, and depending on your needs and budget you can find the best fit for you.

Here are some of the most popular options and the costs. Keep in mind that the price might vary depending on your location, insurance coverage, and the dentist you have chosen.

Gold Alloy Crowns

Gold alloy crowns are made from copper and other metals, such as nickel or chromium and they were popular for back teeth in the past. While some dentists still recommend them for their amazing durability they are not the preferred choice among patients.

While they might be one of the strongest teeth replacements you can get the obvious color of this dental crown makes it less popular.

Gold crown cost:

$600-$2,500 per tooth

Pros:
  • Durable
  • Less tooth structure damaged
  • Ideal for molars
Cons:
  • Obvious in the jaw
  • Possible allergic reactions

Porcelain Crowns

All-porcelain crowns are one of the most popular options on the market today. Porcelain crowns are made from just porcelain and resemble the natural teeth the most. This is one of the reasons why people love porcelain crowns on the front teeth.

They are not as strong as metal ones, but with proper care, they can last a very long time.

Porcelain crowns cost:

$800-$3,000 per tooth

Pros:
  • The porcelain crown is most natural-looking compared to the surrounding teeth
  • It’s a popular crowns cover for front teeth
Cons:
  • All-porcelain crowns are usually the most expensive option in cosmetic dentistry of this type
  • This type of crown is less durable than for example stainless steel crowns or metal crowns
  • It’s not for people with bruxism or teeth grinding issues

Porcelain Fused to Metal Crowns

In order to make the all-porcelain crowns stronger, your dentist might recommend porcelain fused to metal crowns. While all-ceramic crowns are great if you want the natural look, for the molars and back teeth crowns require metal structure to withhold the pressure.

Porcelain fused metal crowns are the best option for most patients looking for both durability and appeal. On the other hand, they can cause some gum problems and be more visible compared to ceramic crowns.

Porcelain fused to metal crowns cost:

$500-$1,500 per tooth

Pros:
  • A durable and great solution for weak teeth
  • Natural-looking
  • Strong and long-lasting
Cons:
  • Metal crowns can cause gums to change color
  • Not completely natural-looking compared to all-porcelain crowns

Zirconia Crowns

One of the newest materials used to create zirconia crowns is becoming a popular choice among patients and as American Dental Association recommends. Zirconia crowns look like natural teeth and have great durability.

The zirconia crowns can be made in the dental office and there is no need to send the mold to the dental laboratory, but keep in mind that you will need a skilled dentist as zirconia is difficult to manage once it’s solid.

Zirconia Crown cost:

$800-$1.500 per tooth

Pros:
  • A great option for weak tooth considering the durability
  • Amazing cosmetic treatment if you want natural-looking teeth
  • This dental crown rarely causes any allergic reaction
Cons:
  • You will need a skilled dentist
  • The zirconia is so strong that it can damage other teeth if the patient is prone to teeth grinding

Do You Need a Dental Crown?

The decision about the best treatment for your oral health and perfect smile requires you to consult with your dentist and/or orthodontist. Some problems can be resolved with invisible aligners, some require a dental implant if you are missing a tooth, while others can be repaired with an appropriate dental crown.

If you are concerned about severe pain or a damaged tooth you should consult with your dentist right away.

After the initial appointment, your doctor will recommend the best treatment, dental crown, and additional work. Keep in mind that some patients require procedures such as root canal or scaling and root planing before any dental crown is placed or missing tooth is replaced.

So, do you need a dental crown? Depending on the problem you have this might be the best solution, but considering how much dental crowns cost you should ask about all options.

Which Dental Crown Is Right for Me?

The appropriate dental crown depends on various factors including your age, budget, and the placement of the teeth you are looking to repair.

Most people choose a permanent crown that is both durable and looks great compared to surrounding teeth. But, the final decision is made once you have all the details about the insurance coverage, additional costs such as root canal or root scaling, and the recommendation from your dentist.

FAQs

How to take care of dental crowns?

While a dental crown might be durable you still have to take care of your teeth. This includes proper oral hygiene, brushing, and flossing. In addition, you should avoid foods that are too hard and schedule regular check-ups with your dentist.

Considering the dental crown cost is not minor you should take good care of your teeth and perfect smile.

How long do dental crowns last?

On average the dental crown should last at least 15 years, but with the proper dental care, you can expand the longevity of dental crowns up to 25-30 years. But, if you want to ensure your investment lasts, you must maintain oral hygiene and visit your dentist often.

Some people manage to have a dental crown for their entire life but considering it’s placed on your natural tooth it’s a good idea to replace them from time to time.

Are crowns painful?

No, the entire procedure of crown placing is pain-free because your dentist will administer a local anesthetic. If you have additional work done such as root canal or scaling you might feel slight discomfort and sensitivity for a few days.

Once the dental crown is placed in you shouldn’t feel any pain or discomfort, but keep in mind that you might be sore for a few days and it will take some time to get used to the new sensations in your mouth.

How do you know when your crowns need to be replaced?

Even though the dental crown cost is significant and they are meant to be long-lasting they are not indestructible. In some cases, you might have to replace the dental crown if:

+ You feel severe pain and discomfort

+ You damaged or chipped the dental crown

+ You have gum problems or receding gums

+ Your tooth is no longer looking natural and healthy

If you experience any of the mentioned conditions you should visit your dentist immediately and have a proper assessment. In most cases, the problem is with the tooth left under the dental crown so you can expect different procedures in order to fix it.

Final Thoughts

It’s no secret that dental crowns cost quite a lot of money, especially if you need to repair more than one tooth. But, investing in your smile and confidence is one of the best decisions you can make.

Choose the best option for your dental issue and consult with your dentist about the choice between different types of dental crowns such as stainless steel crowns, ceramic, or even new zirconia crowns.

In addition, if the dental crown cost is too much for your budget you can always rely on dental insurance, special offers, and even dental schools for a price reduction. At the end of the day, your smile is priceless and the confidence gained will be a lifetime reward.

Dr Febin Mary George - Editor

With more than 10 years as a dental surgeon, Dr Febin Mary George is passionate about educating consumers around the world to help look after their teeth.

She completed her Bachelor of Surgery at the Century Institute of Dental Science and Research Centre in 2010.

Alongside editing the International Journal of Dental Clinics she has also written for major publications including Thrive Global.