If you think you might need a dental crown, your first consideration will likely be what kind of crown to get. There are several different types and each one has advantages and disadvantages. It’s important to understand which is better, porcelain or metal crowns – and if you’ve read the title of this article, then you already know which one we recommend! Let’s talk about why porcelain crowns are preferred over metal ones.
Disadvantages of Metal Crowns
Metal crowns are rarely used anymore, and the reasons for that shift are both practical and aesthetic. When it comes to appearance, new metal crowns are shiny and will stand out when you speak or laugh. Older metal crowns may lose their shine, but they will also usually darken, which can make them look like a decayed tooth. In addition to being generally considered unattractive, there are health risks associated with metal crowns.
Metal crowns are typically made of several different types of metal combined, including gold, chromium, and nickel alloys. If you have an allergy or sensitivity to any of the metals in the crown, it can cause irritation or your gums may reject the crown altogether. Nickel allergies are especially common. Metal is also a good conductor of heat, which means that having metal crowns can make you more sensitive to the temperatures of food and beverages. Finally, in the event that you need an MRI as part of a medical procedure, there is a chance that metal crowns can interact with the magnetic field and distort the image or even become dislodged.
Luckily, most crown procedures these days are 100% porcelain or porcelain fused with metal, but never 100% metal due to the evolution of porcelain crowns.
The Evolution of Porcelain Crowns
The first dental application of porcelain dates back to the 18th century when Alexis Duchateau used porcelain to create a set of dentures. They had an advantage over dentures made from human or animal teeth in that they wouldn’t decay, and so further applications for porcelain were explored. Porcelain was first used as a crown in the late 1950s when Abraham Weinstein invented a porcelain-fused-to-metal (PFM) crown. Advancements in the chemical process of developing porcelain led to the increased strength and resilience of porcelain, to the point that all-porcelain crowns are now as strong and durable – or even more so – than their metal counterparts.
Benefits of Porcelain Crowns
The two most common questions people have when it comes to porcelain crowns are: “Do porcelain crowns change color?” and “How strong are porcelain crowns?” Understandably, you’ll want to feel confident that your porcelain crowns will remain attractive and serviceable for the long haul! Let’s address that first question first: no, porcelain crowns should not change color. In rare cases the glaze on ceramic crowns may become damaged and the layer underneath can stain. This is out of the ordinary and not caused by regular wear from eating and drinking.
When it comes to ceramic dental crown strength, you can rest assured that as long as you observe proper oral hygiene, your crowns will be strong enough to last up to 15 years, and maybe even longer. Talk to your dental crown provider in Scripps Ranch, CA about how to best care for your porcelain crowns.
Do You Think You Need a Dental Crown?
Do you have a tooth that’s badly damaged and might need a dental crown in the Scripps Ranch, CA area? Please call (858) 271-1010 today for an appointment with Dr. Ramin Goshtasbi at Oasis Dental Arts.