How long tooth crowns last depend on a number of factors, including your oral hygiene routine, diet, trauma to the tooth and the type of tooth crown you have.
How long do crowns last?
A typical, porcelain tooth crown should last between 6 to 14 years or more for most patients. This timescale may increase or decrease depending on the patient’s oral hygiene routine. In simple terms, the better your oral hygiene, the longer your crown should last.
In some cases, patients may never need their crowns replacing. However, experiencing an accident, injury or trauma to the crown may result in cracks, breaks or the crown coming loose.
What crowns last the longest?
Some crowns may outlive others due to the materials they’re made from. For example, metal crowns typically last longer than porcelain crowns, because metal is more durable than porcelain. Porcelain crowns, however, are preferred by some patients because they are able to match the colour of their existing tooth or teeth. PFM crowns (porcelain-fused to metal) are a happy medium for patients looking for a durable, yet aesthetically pleasing crown.
Comparing the different types of tooth crown and how long they last
- How long do composite resin crowns last?
Resin crowns typically last slightly less long than porcelain, metal and PFM crowns because they are more prone to cracks and fractures. However, they remain an attractive option because they can match the colour of your existing tooth (like porcelain). They are typically less expensive because of their durability.
- How long do porcelain crowns last?
Porcelain crowns can last between 5 – 15 years, assuming you do not suffer an accident or injury to your mouth. They are a type of ceramic crown.
- How long do ceramic crowns last?
With proper care, ceramic crowns are able to last up to 15 years.
- How long do PFM crowns last?
Porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns, have a slightly longer lifespan to porcelain crowns, averaging 10 to 15 years. The addition of metals reinforces the porcelain crown, ideal for patients who clench or grind their teeth or suffer from bruxism.
- How long do gold crowns last?
Being purely metal, gold crowns have the potential to last for 20 years or more.
- How long do zirconia crowns last?
Like gold crowns, zirconia crowns can last up to and over 20 years. They rank among the strongest and most durable tooth crowns.
For more information, explore our article on the different types of tooth crown.
Reasons why your tooth crown may not last long
- Bad oral hygiene
As briefly mentioned before, poor oral hygiene will likely cause your tooth crown to decay, come loose or crack. This is far more likely for porcelain-based crowns as opposed to metal or resin-based. In the event that bacteria has entered the tooth, your crown will need to be removed in order to treat the underlying tooth.
- Ill-placed or poorly-made crowns
If your crown is ill-fitting or poorly made, it’s likely you will notice this soon after the procedure. Eating may become difficult and you may notice your bite does not align properly. It’s advised that if you experience any discomfort or looseness in your new crown, that you contact your dentist for a replacement.
- PFM crowns may lose their “natural” appearance
Although PFM crowns offer solutions to both aesthetic and durability requirements, over time, they can dull due to wear and tear or poor oral hygiene. The metal base of the crown may start to wear through, which can give your tooth a dull, greyish appearance.
If your tooth crown encounters any of the above problems, it may be time for a replacement
Tooth crown problems should be addressed as soon as possible to ensure the problem does not worsen. We would always recommend contacting a dentist for a routine checkup to ensure nothing is out of the ordinary.
Alternatively, you can read our article on tooth crown pain symptoms before contacting us for a checkup.
Front tooth crowns tend to last longer than back tooth or molar crowns because they experience less pressure. Your back teeth are used to chew and grind down foods, this part of your mouth exerts more force and pressure, meaning your crowns are subjected to more work.
Permanent crowns (as opposed to temporary crowns) can last anywhere from 6 to 20 years. Please refer to the above for more information on each crown type and their average lifespans.
Temporary crowns are placed when waiting for your new, permanent crown to be designed. They should only remain in your mouth for up to three weeks, or until your permanent crown is ready. Your temporary crown is not designed to be permanent and has nowhere near the high levels of durability seen in permanent crowns.
Prices for tooth crowns can be found on our private charges page.
Root canals are not always necessary with regards to placing a dental crown. Tooth crowns can be used to cover and protect teeth that have become damaged through decay or suffer from cavities (once the tooth has been cleaned of decay). If you do require a root canal, your dentist will create a custom-fitted tooth crown to replace the damaged or lost tooth.
You can have a permanent crown placed on any tooth, from front teeth to back teeth and molars that have become damaged through decay or physical injury. Crowns are used to restore the aesthetics and functionality of your tooth.