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How Long Do Implant Crowns Last?
Having implants placed in the mouth can be a lengthy but satisfying process, and many people wonder how long the implant crowns will last after being attached. While the exact material used for implants will affect the overall life expectancy of crowns, patients often can utilize them for anywhere between five and 15 years. However, to achieve this lifespan, the implants must be given proper care and attention.
The expected lifespan of different types of implant crowns
Determining how long a crown will last depends on the material used to create it. Here are some expectations for each of the most common types of implant crowns.
Gold crowns have been in use for many centuries and are one of the most durable choices for implants. A dentist can use all-gold crowns, but most typically gold is combined with other metals. While not the most cosmetically appealing, the metal can often last 50 years or more before giving an individual any problems. Additionally, they cause the least amount of harm to the surrounding teeth. A metal crown is most likely to be used on back molars that are out of sight. However, some people have allergies to different types of metals and do not respond well to this type of crown.
All-ceramic crowns are the most natural-looking option and are often used for implants in the front of the mouth. This material is not as durable as metal and can last up to 15 years before needing replacement. Additionally, there is a greater risk of fracture, which can shorten the lifespan of this crown type significantly. Porcelain can cause damage to the surrounding teeth and can be problematic for people who grind teeth. However, people with metal allergies do not have to worry about an adverse reaction.
Porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns offer a good middle ground between the two other types of crowns. This kind of implant uses a metal substructure with a porcelain exterior. Porcelain and metal combined allow patients to achieve a more natural appearance while providing additional strength. These crowns can often last up to 20 years. In some cases, the underlying metal might be slightly visible through the porcelain.
Caring for Crowns
Implant crowns can start to deteriorate or break if not maintained carefully. It is important for patients to practice good oral hygiene habits to avoid gum disease or dental decay near the site. People who unintentionally grind or clench teeth may need to use a mouth guard to avoid cracking porcelain crowns. It is also vital to avoid chewing hard candy, ice or fingernails. Regular dental appointments are important for catching any issues before they cause even more damage.
When choosing between different types of implant crowns, patients should consider if longevity or appearance is of more value. The location of the implant will have an impact on this decision as well. After the crown is placed, the patient must care for the implants to help them last as long as possible.
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