When you have a dental health concern that needs more extensive treatment, like a broken tooth, your dentist will recommend several options. Dental implants and crowns are common solutions and each provides its own benefits. You may have to choose between the two since they both are used to solve similar problems. Here is a look at dental implants and crowns, and how they can help you.
A dental implant is a device that is attached directly to your jaw bone. A dental surgeon prepares the space for it and places it into the bone so that it will form a solid foundation for an abutment (mounting device) and crown (fake tooth). When done well, a dental implant is one of the best options that you have for replacing teeth that are heavily damaged and can’t be salvaged.
Crowns are fake teeth, usually in the form of a cap, that is used to save a heavily damaged tooth. The crown slides down on top of the visible part of a tooth. When placed properly, it looks just like a regular tooth and contains the damaged tooth. The main use of a crown is to save a tooth that is heavily damaged rather than replacing it. Crowns are used to fix anything from a chip or crack to a mostly missing tooth. The key to using a crown is that there needs to be a foundation for it to attach to. So, it can only be used when there is a tooth or an implant for it to hold on to.
Choose the Dental Implant
In some cases, choosing a dental implant is a better option. You should choose the implant when a tooth needs to be replaced and is unsalvageable. Missing teeth are a prime example of when to choose a dental implant. Since there is not a tooth in the space, it is easy to attach an implant. However, the process of having an implant placed can take up to a year through prep work and the actual fitting. There must also be a sufficient amount of bone available in the open space. Otherwise, the implant will not be secure. This may require a bone graft or another procedure that can take up to six months to heal from.
Choose the Crown
A crown is the better option if you have a tooth that can and should be salvaged. For example, a cracked tooth can be repaired and protected with a crown. It will cover the entire tooth down to the gum line, forming a hard shell over it. In many cases, this can be enough to protect the tooth from continued damage. A crown is a better choice for relatively minor problems like a chipped tooth or a small crack. It gives you the chance to save your natural teeth, which is often the best method of maintaining your dental health. However, crowns can fall off or crack over time. You are likely to have a crown replaced at some point 10 or 15 years from now.
Regardless of which one you choose, we can help you with your dental implant and crown needs. Call us (240) 641-5828 or contact Artistic Family Dentistry of Silver Spring be email today. We will help you through a consultation to fix any dental health issues that you are having.