What Are Implant Crowns?

Implant CrownsAn implant crown should not be confused with abutments, bridges, and other forms of dental implants.

A crown may also work in conjunction with other artificial structures. In traditional cases, a crown will be the only necessary restoration to strengthen the structural integrity of the tooth.

What is an implant crown?

An implant crown is a prosthetic that caps the visible part of a tooth that still has its structural integrity. We can also affix a crown to a dental implant that we screw into the jawbone. A dentist will often urge a patient to strongly consider getting a crown implant when a filling cannot stop an entrenched cavity from expanding, threatening the already precarious state of the tooth.

Implant crowns can consist of a variety of different materials. We can also affix the crowns to the existing tooth or dental implant can with dental cement, a screw, or a combination of both.

Different Types of Implant Crowns

There are many different types of implant crowns. One type may be the preferable option over another by a dentist, depending on the location of the tooth and other factors. A full consultation is always necessary to determine what options are best for the patient.

1. Porcelain Fused to Metal

Porcelain Fused to Metal or PFM crown implants are a popular choice because of their strength. Another advantage of PFM crown implants is that we can use them with temporary dental cement and still form a strong, solid bond.

PMFs are often the best choice for molars and other high load-bearing teeth as they can work in conjunction with metal stops.

2. E.Max Crowns

Emax crowns consist mostly of ceramics, with the main component being lithium disilicate glass in addition to lithium dioxide, phosphoroxide, quarts, potassium oxide, and a few other elements. These crown implants are a good choice for restoring damaged and/or discolored front teeth. These crowns are very durable and are also quite aesthetically pleasing given their similarity to natural teeth.

3.  Layered Zirconia

Strength and aesthetics come together with layered zirconia crown implants. Suitable as a restoration option for any tooth in the mouth, this zirconia substructure has a flexural strength of 1200 Mpa which is greater than that of both PFM crowns, EMax crowns, and other ceramic composites used for implants. Layered zirconia is probably most comparable to gold, but given the ever-increasing price of gold, it is also a much more affordable option.

Aesthetically speaking, there are no black lines along the gingival margins (a common problem with many of the cheaper implant crown options), and there is no visible metal. We usually cement Layered Zirconia crown implants to the tooth, dental implant, or abutment with resin ionomers.

Other things a dentist will consider when trying to figure out if the patient is a good candidate for an implant crown include:

  • Screw/abutment stability
  • Angulation of the implant
  • Depth of the Implant
  • Anticipated Retrieval in the Future
  • Interocclusal Space

Call (619) 805-4248 to schedule an appointment with Mission Valley Dental Arts in our San Diego dental office.

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