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How Long Does a Tooth Crown Last?

June 24, 2024

A dental crown, also known as a cap, is a tooth-shaped restoration that fits over a damaged, weakened, or broken tooth. Crowns restore the tooth's function, appearance, and strength. But like any dental restoration, you might wonder: how long does a tooth crown last?

At Arlington Dental Excellence, we understand the importance of long-lasting dental solutions. In this blog post, our experienced dentists in Arlington, VA, will help you discover how long a tooth crown lasts and what factors influence its durability so you can make informed decisions about your dental care.

Factors Influencing Lifespan of Dental Crowns

  • Oral hygiene: Just like natural teeth, proper brushing and flossing are crucial for maintaining your crowns and surrounding teeth' health. Daily brushing twice a day and flossing once a day help remove plaque and bacteria that can contribute to decay and crown loosening.
  • Diet: A hard, chewy, or sugary diet can put extra stress on your crown, potentially leading to chipping, cracking, or premature wear. Limiting these types of foods and practicing mindful chewing can extend the lifespan of your crown.
  • Habits: Clenching or grinding your teeth can significantly impact your crown's durability. If you have these habits, your dentist may recommend wearing a nightguard to protect your teeth from excessive wear and tear.
  • Placement of the crown: Crowns placed on molars, which experience the most significant chewing forces, might wear down faster than those on front teeth.
  • Underlying dental health: If you have gum disease or other dental issues that affect the health of the supporting bone structure, your crown may be at a higher risk of loosening or falling out. Regular dental checkups and professional cleanings are essential for maintaining good oral health and preventing problems that could compromise your crown.

How Long Does a Tooth Crown Last? Comparing the Different Types 

While a long-term study showed impressive success rates for dental crowns – 97% lasting ten years and 85% lasting 25 years – it's important to remember that even with high-quality materials and expert placement, some crowns (3% at ten years and 15% at 25 years) may require replacement over time. This emphasizes the importance of proper dental hygiene and regular checkups to maximize the lifespan of your crowns.

Different materials offer varied benefits regarding durability, aesthetics, and cost. Here's a detailed comparison of the most common types of tooth crowns and their expected lifespans.

How Long Do Composite Resin Crowns Last? 

These crowns are known for their aesthetics, mimicking the color of your natural teeth. However, they are more prone to chipping and cracking than other materials and last 5-10 years.

How Long Do Porcelain Crowns Last? 

Known for its natural look, porcelain offers a good balance of aesthetics and durability. With proper care, a porcelain crown can last 5-15 years.

How Long Do Ceramic and Zirconia Crowns Last? 

Known for their strength and aesthetics, ceramic crowns, including zirconia, can last up to 15 or even 20+ years. They are an excellent choice for durability and a natural look.

How Long Do PFM Crowns Last? 

These crowns combine the aesthetics of porcelain with the strength of metal, making them ideal for teeth that undergo a lot of pressure. PFM crowns can last 10-15 years.

How Long Do Gold Crowns Last? 

Due to their metal construction, they are known for exceptional durability (over 20 years). However, the gold color might not be aesthetically pleasing for everyone.

How to Increase the Lifespan of Dental Crowns? 

By following these tips, you can significantly increase the chances of your dental crown lasting for many years:

  • Maintain excellent oral hygiene: Brush twice a day for two minutes each time, and floss once a day. Consider using a soft-bristled toothbrush to avoid damaging the crown.
  • Visit your dentist regularly: Schedule regular checkups and cleanings with your dentist at Arlington Dental Excellence. This allows them to monitor the condition of your crown and address any potential problems early on.
  • Avoid using your teeth for tasks other than chewing: Don't use your teeth to open bottles, crack nuts, or chew on hard objects. This can put undue stress on your crown and lead to chipping or breakage.
  • Wear a nightguard if necessary: If you grind or clench your teeth, a night guard can help protect your crown from damage caused by these habits.
  • Tell your dentist about any changes you notice: If you experience any pain, sensitivity, chipping, or cracks in your crown, inform your dentist immediately. Early intervention can often prevent more extensive repairs or replacements.

Dental Crowns at Arlington Dental Excellence 

So, how long does a tooth crown last? With proper care and maintenance, a tooth crown can serve you well for 10 to 15 years and often much longer. At Arlington Dental Excellence, we are committed to providing the highest quality dental care to help you maintain healthy, long-lasting crowns. If you suspect you need a crown or a crown replacement or have any concerns about your dental health, don't hesitate to contact us. We can ensure your smile remains strong and beautiful for many years.


Is it cheaper to pull a tooth or root canal?

A root canal procedure eliminates bacteria from an infected tooth by replacing damaged or infected pulp with a filling material. On the other hand, tooth extraction involves completely removing the tooth from its socket. A root canal typically costs between $600 and $1,400, while a tooth extraction usually ranges from $130 to $500.

Can food get under a crown?

When a dental crown isn't correctly positioned, it can leave spaces where food particles easily lodge. This poses a challenge for maintaining proper oral hygiene, particularly around the crown site.

Are crowns stronger than natural teeth?

Made from robust materials such as porcelain or zirconia, Crowns are much stronger than natural tooth structures, particularly dentin. They can endure significant biting forces and are resistant to cracking or fracturing.

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