Same Day Crowns vs Traditional Crowns

Introduction 

 

Smiling black lady with perfect teeth. Patients compare same day crowns vs traditional crowns, but both produce equal results.

 

In the recent months, I have been receiving enquiries from busy professionals about the option to use same day crowns vs traditional crowns. 

When it comes to dental procedures, crowns are a common and effective solution for restoring damaged or decayed teeth. In the past, getting a crown meant multiple appointments and a waiting period for a lab to manufacture the crown. However, with advancements in technology, same-day crowns have become increasingly popular. 

But what exactly are same-day crowns, and how do they compare to traditional crowns?

 

 

What is a dental crown? 

 

First, let’s define what a crown is. A dental crown is a cap that is placed over a damaged tooth to restore its shape, size, and strength. Crowns can be made of a variety of materials, including porcelain, metal, or a combination of the two. They are designed to cover the entire tooth, providing protection and improving its appearance.

 

 

Traditional dental crowns

 

Traditional crowns are manufactured in a lab, which means that there is a waiting period between the initial appointment and the final placement of the crown. 

This waiting period can be up to several weeks, during which time the patient must wear a temporary crown to protect the tooth. Once the lab manufactures the crown, the patient returns to the dentist’s office for a second appointment to have the permanent crown placed.

 

 

Same day dental crowns

 

On the other hand, same-day crowns are made using a digital scanner that takes an image of the damaged tooth. The image is then uploaded to a computer, where a 3D model of the tooth is created. The model is used to create the crown, which is manufactured in the dentist’s office using a milling machine. The entire process takes just a few hours, and the patient can leave the office with their permanent crown in place.

 

 

Same day dental crowns vs Traditional crowns

 

To help you make a better decision on whether to proceed with either treatment, I have created a side-by-side comparison table for your ease of convenience: 

Same Day Dental Crowns Traditional Dental Crowns
Short waiting period Longer waiting period
Can be done immediately and is suitable for people with busy schedules Usually takes about 1 week to multiple weeks for completion. 
Usually costs slightly more as a premium is charged for same-day service. Is usually slightly less expensive.
Reduced follow-ups. Require multiple follow ups to place the actual crown.
Highly precise and accurate fitting as the crown is created using digital scanning and milling technology.   Might require multiple adjustments to fit.
Usually made of Zirconia.  Can be made out of a range of materials such as: Porcelain, gold, e-max, Zirconia or a combination of materials. 

 

What are the pros and cons of traditional dental crowns?

 

Pros:

  1. Durability: Traditional dental crowns are made of materials such as porcelain, metal, or a combination of both, which are strong and long-lasting.
  2. Aesthetics: Traditional dental crowns can be customized to match the natural color of the surrounding teeth, providing a seamless and natural-looking appearance.
  3. Coverage: Traditional dental crowns offer full coverage of the damaged tooth, protecting it from further decay or damage.
  4. Compatibility: Traditional dental crowns are suitable for a wide range of dental issues, including large cavities, root canals, and broken or fractured teeth.

Cons:

  1. Multiple appointments: Traditional dental crowns usually require two or more appointments to complete, as the impression of the tooth is sent to a dental lab to manufacture the crown.
  2. Temporary crowns: Patients may need to wear a temporary crown while waiting for the permanent crown to be manufactured, which can be uncomfortable and may require extra care.
  3. Tooth preparation: Traditional dental crowns require the dentist to remove a significant amount of the tooth’s natural structure to fit the crown, which may compromise the tooth’s integrity.
  4. Cost: Traditional dental crowns can be more expensive than other dental restorations due to the cost of materials and lab fees.

 

 

What are the pros and cons of same day dental crowns?

 

Same-day dental crowns, also known as chairside CAD/CAM crowns, are a newer type of dental restoration that offer several advantages over traditional dental crowns. Here are some pros and cons of same-day dental crowns:

Pros:

  1. Convenience: Same-day dental crowns can be manufactured and placed in a single appointment, saving patients time and reducing the need for multiple visits to the dentist.
  2. Speed: Same-day dental crowns can be made and placed in just a few hours, providing quick and efficient treatment for patients.
  3. Accuracy: Same-day dental crowns are created using digital scanning and milling technology, which can produce highly accurate and precise restorations that fit perfectly over the damaged tooth.
  4. No need for temporary crowns: Patients do not need to wear temporary crowns while waiting for the permanent crown to be manufactured, which can be uncomfortable and require extra care.
  5. Preservation of natural tooth structure: Same-day dental crowns require less removal of the tooth’s natural structure, which can help preserve the tooth’s integrity.

Cons:

  1. Limited materials: Same-day dental crowns are typically made of materials such as ceramic or resin, which may not be as durable as traditional dental crown materials such as metal or porcelain-fused-to-metal.
  2. Cost: Same-day dental crowns can be more expensive than traditional dental crowns due to the use of advanced technology and equipment.
  3. Skill level: The dentist must have specialized training and experience in using CAD/CAM technology to ensure a proper fit and optimal aesthetic outcome of the crown.
  4. Not suitable for all cases: Same-day dental crowns may not be suitable for all dental cases, such as those that require complex or extensive dental work.

 

 

Benefits of same day dental crowns vs traditional crowns

 

So, what are the benefits of same-day crowns over traditional crowns? 

One of the most significant advantages is the convenience factor. With same-day crowns, patients can have their damaged teeth restored in just one appointment, without the need for a temporary crown or multiple visits to the dentist’s office. This is especially beneficial for patients with busy schedules or those who live far away from their dentist’s office.

Another advantage of same-day crowns is that they are more precise than traditional crowns. With digital scanning and 3D modeling, the crown can be customized to fit the patient’s tooth perfectly. This ensures a comfortable fit and reduces the risk of any complications that could arise from an ill-fitting crown.

Lastly, same-day crowns are made from high-quality materials that are just as durable and long-lasting as traditional crowns. Patients can expect their same-day crowns to last for many years, providing the same level of protection and aesthetic enhancement as a traditional crown.

Of course, there are some potential drawbacks to same-day crowns as well. Because the entire process is completed in one appointment, the patient may experience some discomfort or sensitivity during the procedure. Additionally, same-day crowns may be more expensive than traditional crowns, depending on the dentist’s office and the materials used.

 

 

Commonly asked questions about same day dental crowns vs traditional crowns

 

To help you make a better decision about same-day dental crowns vs traditional dental crowns, our clinicians have consolidated a list of commonly asked questions from patients regarding this topic of interest: 

How are same-day crowns made?

Same-day crowns are made using digital scanning technology and a milling machine. The dentist will take an image of the damaged tooth using a digital scanner, which creates a 3D model of the tooth. The 3D model is then used to create the crown, which is manufactured in the dentist’s office using a milling machine. The entire process takes just a few hours.

Are same-day crowns as durable as traditional crowns?

Yes, same-day crowns are made from high-quality materials that are just as durable and long-lasting as traditional crowns. Patients can expect their same-day crowns to last for many years, providing the same level of protection and aesthetic enhancement as a traditional crown.

Are same-day crowns more expensive than traditional crowns?

The cost of same-day crowns can vary depending on the dentist’s office and the materials used. In some cases, same-day crowns may be more expensive than traditional crowns due to the use of advanced technology and equipment.

How long does the same-day crown procedure take?

The entire same-day crown procedure typically takes just a few hours. After the initial appointment and digital scanning, the crown can be manufactured and placed on the same day.

Are there any risks or complications associated with same-day crowns?

As with any dental procedure, there is a small risk of complications associated with same-day crowns. These can include discomfort or sensitivity during the procedure, as well as potential issues with the fit or appearance of the crown. However, these risks are relatively low and can be minimized with proper planning and communication between the patient and dentist.

Are same-day crowns suitable for everyone?

Same-day crowns may not be suitable for all patients, depending on the extent of the damage or decay to the tooth. In some cases, traditional crowns may be a better option. The dentist will assess the patient’s individual needs and recommend the best course of treatment.

How are same-day crowns made?

Same-day dental crowns are made using CAD/CAM technology. The dentist first takes a digital scan of the patient’s tooth using a special camera, which is then used to create a 3D model of the tooth on a computer. The dentist then designs the crown using specialized software, which is sent to a milling machine that carves the crown from a block of ceramic or resin.

Are same-day dental crowns as strong as traditional dental crowns?

Same-day dental crowns are typically made of ceramic or resin, which are strong and durable materials. However, they may not be as strong as traditional dental crown materials such as metal or porcelain-fused-to-metal. The dentist will recommend the best material for the individual case.

How long do same-day dental crowns last?

Same-day dental crowns can last for several years with proper care and maintenance. Good oral hygiene practices, such as brushing and flossing regularly, can help prolong the life of the crown.

Are same-day dental crowns covered by insurance or Medisave?

Same-day dental crowns are generally covered by insurance, but coverage may vary depending on the individual insurance plan. Patients should check with their insurance provider to determine their coverage. 

Is the same-day dental crown procedure painful? 

The same-day dental crown procedure is typically not painful. The dentist will administer local anesthesia to numb the tooth and surrounding area before the procedure, ensuring that you are comfortable during the procedure. 

Can same-day dental crowns be placed on any tooth?

Same-day dental crowns are suitable for most cases, but they may not be suitable for complex or extensive dental work. The dentist will evaluate the patient’s dental condition and recommend the best course of treatment.

Same day dental crowns vs traditional crowns materials 

Traditional crowns are typically made of materials like porcelain, gold, or a combination of both. These materials are known for their durability and strength, which is why they have been used for decades in the dental industry. 

 

On the other hand, same day dental crowns are often made from a type of ceramic material called zirconia. Zirconia is known for its strength and durability, as well as its ability to blend in seamlessly with natural teeth. 

 

One advantage of zirconia crowns is that they do not require a metal base like traditional crowns, which can make them more aesthetically pleasing. However, some patients may prefer the look of porcelain or gold crowns over zirconia. 

 

It is important to discuss your options with your dentist and determine which type of crown material will best suit your individual needs and preferences.

Cost of same day dental crowns vs traditional crowns 

The cost of same day dental crowns and traditional crowns can vary depending on several factors. In general, same day dental crowns are often more expensive than traditional crowns. At Elite Dental Group, same-day dental crowns start from $3,000 onwards, while traditional dental crowns have a price range from $960 onwards. 

This is because the technology and equipment used for same day crowns is more advanced and requires additional investment by the dental office. Additionally, same day crowns may be made of higher quality materials such as ceramic or zirconia, which can also increase the cost. 

On the other hand, traditional crowns may be less expensive because they are typically made in a dental laboratory, which may have lower overhead costs. The materials used for traditional crowns may also be less expensive, such as porcelain fused to metal. 

However, it is important to keep in mind that the cost of a crown can vary depending on individual circumstances such as the location of the dental office, the dentist’s experience, and the complexity of the procedure. Patients should discuss the costs and options with their dentist to determine the best choice for their needs and budget.

Strength and durability of same day dental crowns vs traditional crowns 

Strength and durability are critical factors to consider when choosing between same day dental crowns and traditional crowns. Both same day dental crowns and traditional dental crowns offer the same strength and durability, making them suitable options for restoring damaged or decayed teeth. 

Traditional crowns are often made from materials such as porcelain or ceramic fused to metal, which are known for their durability and strength. However, same day dental crowns can also offer excellent strength and durability, as they are typically made from high-quality, tooth-colored ceramic materials. 

The ceramic material used in same day dental crowns is often just as strong as traditional crown materials, meaning they can withstand the daily wear and tear of biting and chewing. Additionally, same day dental crowns are often created using advanced CAD/CAM technology, which allows for precise measurements and a perfect fit, ensuring that the crown is strong and durable enough to last for years. 

The choice between the two ultimately depends on the specific needs of each patient and their individual preferences.

Are there any limitations to the types of teeth that can be treated with same day dental crowns?

The quick answer to this is no. Same day dental crowns are suitable for treating most teeth, including molars, premolars, and front teeth. However, there are some cases where traditional crowns may be recommended instead. 

For example, teeth that have undergone significant decay or damage may require a more extensive treatment plan, such as root canal therapy, before a same day crown can be placed. Similarly, teeth with severe bite problems or alignment issues may require a more customized approach that is not feasible with same day crowns.

The decision to use same day dental crowns versus traditional crowns will depend on several factors, including the extent of the tooth damage or decay, the patient’s overall dental health, and the preferences of the dentist and patient. It is important to discuss all available treatment options with a dental professional to determine the most appropriate and effective approach for your specific dental needs.

Are there any special care instructions for same day dental crowns compared to traditional crowns?

After getting same day dental crowns, I usually advise my patients to avoid eating or drinking anything for the first hour or two after the procedure. This allows the cement to set and ensures the crown stays in place. 

Patients should also avoid eating hard or sticky foods that can damage or dislodge the crown. Daily brushing and flossing are also recommended to keep the crown and the surrounding teeth healthy and clean. 

It is important to note that while same day dental crowns are strong and durable, they are not invincible. Patients should take care to avoid using their teeth to open packages or bite down on hard objects, as this can cause the crown to crack or break. ‘

Regular dental check-ups are important to ensure that the crown remains in good condition and that there are no underlying dental issues. In terms of care instructions, same day dental crowns are very similar to traditional crowns, so patients should not expect to have to make any significant changes to their oral hygiene routine.

Can same day dental crowns be replaced if they become damaged or worn over time?

Same day dental crowns, like traditional crowns, may require replacement over time due to wear and tear or damage. While same day dental crowns are known for their strength and durability, they are not indestructible. 

Fortunately, same day dental crowns can be replaced if they become damaged or worn. The replacement process is typically the same as the initial placement process, and the dentist will need to remove the damaged or worn crown and take new impressions of the affected tooth to create a new crown. The new crown will then be placed onto the tooth using the same bonding process as before. 

It is important to note that the lifespan of a same day dental crown can vary based on factors such as oral hygiene habits, biting and chewing forces, and any underlying dental conditions. Patients who receive same day dental crowns should follow the recommendations from their dental professional for care and maintenance to help ensure their crowns last as long as possible.

 

 

Next Steps

 

If you are looking to complete your treatment with a crown, but are unsure as to whether you are more suitable for a same-day or traditional dental crown, I invite you to our clinic to seek a detailed consultation that can help you better assess your suitability and preference. 

Some of the factors that can help you make a better decision are: 

Are you rushing for time?: Same-day crowns are a quicker option than traditional crowns, which require two separate appointments. If the patient needs a crown urgently, such as for a broken or cracked tooth, same-day crowns may be the better choice.

What are your usual eating, chewing and biting habits?: Traditional crowns can be made from a variety of materials, including porcelain, metal, and ceramic. Same-day crowns are typically made from a single type of material, such as ceramic or resin. Depending on the patient’s preferences and budget, one option may be more suitable than the other.

Traditional crowns are often considered to be more durable and long-lasting than same-day crowns. This is because they are custom-made in a dental laboratory and can be carefully crafted to fit the patient’s specific dental needs. Same-day crowns, on the other hand, are created in-office using a milling machine, which may not produce the same level of precision as a laboratory.

What is your budget?: Same-day crowns are typically more expensive than traditional crowns. This is because they require specialized equipment and technology, and the cost of this equipment is passed on to the patient. If cost is a major consideration for the patient, traditional crowns may be a more affordable option.

Do you want your crowns to match up to the shade of your teeth?: Same-day crowns can be designed to match the patient’s natural teeth, but they may not offer the same level of customization as traditional crowns. Traditional crowns can be custom-made to match the exact shade and shape of the patient’s natural teeth, which may be important for patients who are concerned about the appearance of their smile.

 

In Summary

 

I hope this article has helped you to narrow down your options better. Same-day crowns offer a convenient, precise, and durable alternative to traditional crowns. While there are some potential drawbacks to consider, the benefits of same-day crowns make them a popular and effective solution for restoring damaged or decayed teeth. If you’re in need of a crown, talk to us about the possibility of a same-day crown and see if it is the right choice for you.

Amanda Koh
contact@dramandakoh.com

Dr Amanda Koh is a cosmetic dentist with a focus on teeth straightening and smile makeover treatments. She works primarily with Invisalign clear aligners and braces to help patients achieve the smiles that they desire.