When you need restorative dentistry due to tooth decay or loss, your dentist might provide you with several options that include a dental implant or a root canal with a crown. At first glance, these two options might seem interchangeable. However, there are benefits of each procedure over the other. It is important to understand the advantages and disadvantages of each option to make the most informed choice. Here are some of the pros and cons of dental implants and crowns.
Crowns are Less Expensive
Dental implants will always cost more than a dental crown or bridge. You will likely need to schedule several visits with an oral surgeon, compared to the relatively quick process of placing a crown. Most dental insurance plans cover dental crowns, while not all plans cover dental implants. This can also make a big difference in the final cost you can expect to pay for each procedure. However, an increasing number of dental insurance companies are starting to cover dental implants.
Dental Implants Last Longer
The savings of comparing a crown to a dental implant are relatively short term. Dental implants are considered permanent teeth, whereas a crown might need to be replaced every 10 to 15 years. Depending on your age, it could potentially be less expensive in the long run to opt for the implant. Since the implant is placed in the jaw, it isn’t likely to fall out. Instead it functions much like a natural tooth. This includes preserving natural tooth spacing and function.
Dental Implants Need a Crown on Top
The term “dental implant” refers to the screw-like post that is placed into the jaw where there once was a tooth. You will still need a crown or other dental prosthetic device to be placed on top of the dental implant. In a way, the cost of the crown needs to be added for either procedure.
Crowns Can Go On Top of Root Canals
If you still have your tooth and it can be preserved through a root canal with a crown, there are many benefits to keeping your natural teeth. Even though you’ll need a root canal, keeping your natural tooth’s roots can help to maintain natural tooth spacing and oral health. If this is an option for you, your dentist will likely advise you to go this route.
Every case is different. There isn’t a one size fits all approach to dental care. While dental implants might be the right choice for many people, it isn’t right for everyone. An older retiree who needs many teeth replaced might be advised that dentures or crowns would be a better choice whereas a young professional who only needs a single tooth replaced might be better off with a dental implant that will last many decades. There are many factors that should be considered in this decision.