Crowns and dental implants are effective tooth restorative methods used in case of tooth decay or gum disease. Both methods serve as major restorative methods for teeth that are missing or have been severely damaged. They improve functionality of teeth, its cosmetic aspect and thus, one’s smile. Below we will consider each treatment and find the advantages and disadvantages of each.
Dental implant is known to be a permanent solution to missing teeth. The process is surgical and involves surgical implantation into the jaw bone or within the gum line. The first visit will involve X-rays to find out if the jawbone is strong enough to support the implant. If the jawbone is not strong enough, a bone graft can be done or a subperiosteal implant (under the gum but on top of the jaw bone) will be given as an option in place of the endosteal implant (within the jaw bone). Once it is decided which option is best, the surgery will be performed and a temporary crown will be added to the implant until the permanent one is ready to attached.
Implants simply replace roots of the teeth to make a sturdy foundation for permanent teeth. As long as you perform regular dental hygiene and attend your dentist for checkups, the implants can last for a great number of years. Implants look and function exactly like normal teeth. This means that you will be able to eat normal food without much worry or pain. It takes several visits to the dentist to be complete the process and a couple of months to fully recover and heal.
A crown is a solution when a single section of the tooth decays. Quite often, it goes hand in hand with root canal therapy. Root canal involves removal of the pulp of the tooth while the entire tooth remains intact. The tooth then becomes fragile and should be replaced with a crown. A crown is therefore only used to restore strength, shape and functionality of teeth. It is usually placed in the gum margin or in the tooth’s root to act as an anchor.
The most noticeable advantage of a crown is that its placement is easy and requires very few visits to the dentist. It partially covers the outside part of your tooth depending on previous fillings, root canals or fractures. The disadvantage with crowns is that they are not permanent. Even though some last for many years, most of them eventually need replacement.
It is difficult to compare dental implants and crowns as they serve totally different functions. If you have missing teeth or one that is badly damaged, make sure you talk to your dentist to see whether any of these restorative procedures will be right for you.