The Different Types of Dental Implant Crowns

Implant crowns are the finishing touches after dental implants have been installed. These devices are placed on the abutment fitted on the external-facing end of the implant, and they look just like real teeth.

Dental crowns can be made from a wide variety of materials like ceramics, porcelain, gold, silver and metal alloys. Ceramics and porcelain provide the most natural look, while gold offers the most durable type of crown a person can get.

The materials crowns are made from are not the only things that differentiate them. The way a crown is attached to the implant also makes a noticeable difference. The two main types of dental crowns for implants are cement-retained and screw-retained crowns.

Let us take a closer look at each type of implant crown:

1. Cement-retained implant crowns

Cement-retained crowns are attached above the abutment. Dental cement is used to keep the prosthetic permanently attached to the abutment. These types of crowns offer increased visual aesthetics and straightforward attachments.

2. Screw-retained dental crowns

A screw-retained implant crown consists of a lingual and occlusal screw. The crown is designed with a hole on the side of the occlusal or lingual portion of the device. The hole makes it possible to connect the restoration to the implant with a fixation screw attached to the external-facing end of the abutment.

This configuration makes it easy to remove the prosthetic for repairs, restoration or cleanings.

What are the disadvantages of screw-retained and cement-retained crowns?

No dental prosthetic is perfect, and that applies to screw-retained and cement-retained crowns. For example, while screw-retained crowns can be easily removed for restoration and repairs, the area surrounding the access hole is prone to chips. This drawback is often addressed with composite bonding.

Another major drawback associated with screw-retained dentures is the fact the crown can become loose over time. Patients need the services of a dentist to tighten it back up.

The main drawback of cemented crowns is the potential for inflammation when some of the substance seeps into the patient's gum line. These types of crowns are also more challenging to remove, and that complicates things when it is time for repairs and restorations.

Why patients choose dental implants and crowns to replace missing teeth

While there are a few other dental prosthetics like dentures and crowns that can be used to replace missing teeth, none are as useful as implants. Implants do not just replace the look and function of missing natural tooth; these devices also replace the lost tooth root.

That helps to keep the jawbone tissue loss that is often associated with implants at bay. Other benefits of implants include:

  • Prevents the remaining natural teeth from moving towards the gap.
  • Provides a permanent solution that stays in.
  • Implants are firmly secured in the patient's jawbone, making the devices feel and function just like natural teeth.
  • Cleaning implants are the same as taking care of natural teeth.

Want to find out if you are a great candidate for implant crowns? Schedule a consultation with one of our specialists today.

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For more information or to schedule an appointment with Preferred Dental Center, request an appointment in our San Antonio dental office here: Or call us at (210) 593-7636.

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