When you first get a dental crown to protect your weakened or damaged tooth, one of the biggest questions on your mind is likely to be, “How long will it last?” After all, no dental restoration can be expected to last forever; sooner or later your crown will need to be replaced. So exactly when will that be? Here’s what you need to know about the average dental crown lifespan – and what you can do to help extend it.
Estimating the Lifespan of a Dental Crown
If you ask your dentist how long your dental crown will last, they probably won’t be able to give you an exact answer. That’s because there are several variables that help determine how long a crown can stay in your mouth. The kind of material it’s composed of can make a difference, of course, but the most important factor is maintenance; the better care your crown receives, the longer it will last.
Generally speaking, the lifespan of a crown is usually between 5 and 15 years. However, some crowns end up lasting for decades thanks to excellent maintenance. As such, if you want your crown to stay in your mouth as long as possible, you need to carefully consider the kind of care you give it.
How to Take Care of Your Dental Crown
Your dentist will give you some tips for proper dental crown maintenance so that you can protect your new restoration. Here are some basic steps you’ll want to follow:
- Practice good oral hygiene: Dental crowns can’t get cavities, but the teeth they cover can still suffer from decay. Protect your crown as well as your natural smile by brushing thoroughly at least twice a day.
- Break bad habits: Chewing your fingernails, crunching ice, and tearing open packages with your teeth are all habits that can wear down or break your dental crown. You’ll want to identify these bad habits and put a stop to them as soon as possible.
- Wear a nightguard: Many people grind their teeth at night without realizing it. If your crown is repeatedly exposed to the pressures of grinding, it could eventually crack. Wearing a customized nightguard while you sleep can go a long way toward keeping your dental crown safe.
- Visit your dentist: During your biannual dental checkups, your dentist can check your crown for problems. If they find any issues, they may be able to address them before the crown is compromised.
In short, a dental crown can last for a long time, but you need to take the initiative if you want to maximize its lifespan. Reach out to your dentist today to see if they have any additional tips for dental crown maintenance.
About the Author
Dr. Dennis E. Stansbury has been practicing dentistry for over four decades. He is currently a member of the Texas Dental Association, the Southwest Academy of Restorative Dentistry, and the Smith County Dental Society. At his Tyler practice, Stansbury Dental, he provides his patients with long-lasting crowns made out of highly durable materials. To schedule a consultation with Dr. Stansbury, visit his website or call (903) 561-1122.