A dental crown is a tooth-shaped "cap" that is placed over a tooth- covering the tooth to restore its shape and size, strength, and/or to improve its appearance. A crown is often needed when a simple filling will not restore the tooth properly.
The longevity and durability of your crown is directly related to the materials selected to make the crown. So let’s take a look at different options.
The more precious metal or gold content in the metal the better the fit and better for the health of gums around the crown. Keep in mind fit is an important factor in sealing out the bacteria that tries to get between the crown and the tooth, possibly causing decay and premature failure of the crown.
All porcelain crowns are generally considered the most aesthetic choice since they closely resemble the color and appearance of your teeth. Porcelain continues to improve and in fact there are newly developed porcelain materials, such as zirconium and empress 2 that can better withstand the forces of chewing. Porcelain crowns can give you the Hollywood smile that you are looking for.
Porcelain Fused to Metal Crowns
The third kind of crown has a porcelain exterior with a metal framework supporting it underneath. The porcelain gives you the desired aesthetic, and the metal framework provides better structural support making the porcelain much stronger. This type of porcelain-metal hybrid crown can be used to replace missing teeth in any area of the mouth, front or back. Again, as a rule, the more precious metal or gold content in the metal, the better the fit and better for the health of gums around the crown. An example of this great type of crown would be the “captek” crown.
The gold alloy used in dental crowns is the most biocompatible of all avaialble dental materials: it fits better, it requires the removal of less tooth structure in the preparation phase; and, because it has relatively the same hardness as natural teeth, it is causes considerably less wear on the opposing teeth like a ceramic materials would. All things being equal- a gold crown is the best clinical choice. But the problem, of course, is the color- and most patients would prefer to have a crown that blends in esthetically.
When esthetics is not a concern- for example with molar teeth that are not visible during normal function-- we will suggest gold crowns due to the superior functionallity. However, the patient always has the final say when it comes to esthetics!