The cost of a dental crown can vary depending on various factors. These include the type and material of the crown, the region where you live, and your insurance coverage.
Generally speaking, without insurance coverage, you should expect to pay anywhere from $500 to $3,000 for a single crown. With insurance coverage, you may be able to enjoy discounts ranging from 10% to 60%, bringing the price down significantly.
The most expensive option is typically an all-porcelain crown which can cost between $800 and $3,000 per tooth without insurance. If your dentist is using precious metals such as gold or platinum in your dental work then it will usually be more expensive than other materials like porcelain.
On the other hand, a more affordable option is typically a porcelain-fused-to-metal crown which can cost anywhere from $500 to $1,500 per tooth without insurance. This type of crown offers strength and durability with a more natural look than traditional metal crowns.
In addition to the cost of the dental crown, you may also have to pay for additional costs such as the dentist’s time and expertise, laboratory fees associated with creating your dental work, and X-rays or imaging needed to diagnose any underlying issues in your teeth or mouth. The total amount you will be expected to pay can vary depending on these factors.
What is a dental crown?
A dental crown is the part of the tooth that protrudes from the gum and is covered with enamel.
Dental crowns are a tooth replacement. A distinction is made between natural and artificial dental crowns. The latter can be incorporated on tooth stumps, post abutments, but also on dental implants.
Further information and interesting facts about dental crowns I have clearly explained for you in another article.
When do you need a crown for your teeth?
A dental crown may be necessary for you for a variety of reasons. It is used when it is no longer possible to restore a damaged tooth with a dental filling.
In principle, you can have any tooth crowned. The only prerequisite is that the tooth root is still firmly seated in the jaw and your gums are healthy.
Dental crowns are useful for a variety of dental problems.
The most common reasons to have a crown are decay, breakage or even loss of a tooth due to an accident. In addition, there are others:
- Placement of a bridge (crowning of abutment teeth).
- Root canal treatment (stability of the dental crown decreases).
- Misalignment of the teeth.
- Genetic dental defects.
Since the reasons are varied, there are various forms of dental crowns.
Types and costs of dental crowns
Dentistry distinguishes dental crowns according to different criteria:
The cost of a dental crown depends mainly on the size and the material used to make the crown. I therefore explain these details in more detail:
In terms of size, partial crowns and full crowns are distinguished from each other:
- Partial crowns cover only part of the tooth.
- Full crowns replace the entire natural tooth crown.
Which material your dentist recommends for making your crown usually depends on where the crown will be placed.
- For aesthetic purposes, crowns can be made so inconspicuously that they are almost undetectable from the outside.
- This is an important criterion if you need a denture in the anterior region.
- Good material and high quality are associated with higher costs, but do not worry, even cheaper materials are safe for health.
In addition to clearly recognizable aesthetic advantages, more expensive materials offer you other advantages. They have a longer shelf life and are very well tolerated, even if you are prone to allergic reactions, for example.
Cost of dental crowns by material
Full ceramic crown
Choose an all-ceramic mainly for aesthetic reasons when your teeth are treated in the front visible area. This is because even to a professional, it is almost indistinguishable from natural teeth, making it truly inconspicuous.
Involving higher costs, but hardly visible: all-ceramic crowns.
Full ceramic crowns are the most expensive option among dental crowns. Here you have to count with about 1,000 €.
The production is complex and causes high costs. Dental technicians customize a ceramic base material to match your natural teeth and use colored cements to make the crown match the color of your teeth.
A veneer crown is most often used in the visible area of teeth, i.e., the incisor or the front area of the molars. It is made of metal – but is partially or completely covered with a tooth-colored layer.
Ceramic or plastic is almost always used to veneer the crown.
- A resin veneer costs approximately €300-400.
- A ceramic veneer can also cost you € 500.
Metal crown (full cast crown)
The metal crown (also full cast crown) is the cheapest option and costs around 200 €.
It is made of metal or gold alloy. Perhaps you are also familiar with the popularly used term gold crown.
The metal crown is particularly durable and very resistant to fracture, but has major aesthetic disadvantages due to its color. This variant is therefore mostly used in the non-visible area (e.g. molar tooth).
Full resin crown
The all-plastic crown serves as a long-term temporary rather than a full denture. That’s why temporary crowns are almost always made of resin. They are inexpensive and can theoretically be fabricated in a matter of minutes.
Does health insurance cover the cost of your dental crown?
Since 2005, health insurance companies have been paying you a legally regulated fixed allowance, regardless of the type of dental crown. Based on standard care, the insurance companies cover about 50% of the average dental and dental-technical costs.
This keeps your own contribution (depending on the type of crown) relatively manageable. You will find out what costs you will have to pay in detail in the treatment and cost plan that your dentist will draw up before treatment begins.
Find out the cost of dental crowns from your dentist and health insurance company.
You can get even a little more subsidy if you have kept your bonus booklet consistently for the last 5 years.
Then statutory health insurance companies such as DAK and TK pay:
- On top of the fixed allowance, another 20%.
- If you have kept your bonus booklet for 10 years without gaps, you get even 30%.
For AOK-insured, the fixed subsidy increases to:
- 60%, if you were the past five years regularly once in the calendar year at the dental checkup.
- 65% if you have been to the dentist for regular checkups for ten years.
Even if you are one of the following people with low financial means, you do not have to do without your dentures.
The health insurance company will cover the full cost of the dental crown. The so-called hardship cases include:
- Patients with a low income.
- Patients in education, single or in training allowance.
- Patients after educational support.
- Patients with vocational training allowance or social benefits.
Inform here also before treatment at your health insurance.
Is a supplementary dental insurance useful?
To absorb further costs of the co-payment, a supplementary insurance can be quite useful for you.
You can take out a good supplementary dental insurance for as little as 8 euros a month.
With supplemental dental insurance, your teeth are covered in the best way possible.
Most contracts are constructed in the manner of indemnity insurance. Here, the premium increases gradually with age. With a contract modeled on life insurance, premiums are higher from the start.
- Be aware that many providers set a waiting period of 8 months after the conclusion of the contract before the insurance benefit takes effect.
- The amount of reimbursement also plays an important role in the choice of supplementary dental insurance. Usual is a percentage of 80 to 90% (although some insurers even reimburse 100% of the costs).
Tip: When taking out supplementary dental insurance, make sure that you also get reimbursed for ceramic veneers for your back molars, if possible. In addition, all-ceramic crowns or bridges should also be covered.
Last but not least, remember to have regular checkups with your dentist. Because supplementary dental insurance will also reward you for this.
Does a dental crown from abroad pay off?
Going abroad is worthwhile, because the cost of dentures is much cheaper compared to Germany, as dental laboratories charge lower prices there.
While dental crowns in Austria or Switzerland are similar or even higher than in Germany, you will pay much less in Hungary, for example. A temporary crown will only cost you €60 here. Dental laboratories in Turkey also offer a favorable alternative without sacrificing quality, thanks to lower labor costs.
Saving tip: In Poland, you can save twice thanks to lower manufacturing prices and fixed subsidy from the health insurance!
Additional costs when inserting a dental crown
The amount of possible additional costs you may incur depends on the condition of your teeth. This is because your dentist can only place your crown if your adjacent teeth are healthy
- If you have any holes in adjacent teeth or even periodontal disease, your dentist will have to treat these before inserting the actual crown.
- In the worst case scenario, your dentist may also have to extract a tooth and place an implant.
This can cause further costs. Health insurance companies do not cover all treatment costs. Therefore, inquire in detail BEFORE the treatment, then you will be spared financial surprises.
How does the treatment proceed at all?
Before your dentist can insert your finished crown, several office visits are necessary, because various steps are required for a crowning.
- First, your artificial crown is fabricated on a model, for which the damaged tooth must first be ground under local anesthesia (in some cases, unfortunately, up to 60 percent of the partially healthy hard tissue).
- Then the dentist makes a dental impression with a special material or by scan.
- The impression then provides the basis for your crown to be fabricated in the dental laboratory.
- For ceramic and veneer crowns, it is important that your dentist also determines the exact tooth color.
- The dentist then cements your lab-made crown firmly to your remaining tooth stump. This may cause you a little pain until the crown is finally perfectly fitted and placed.
So plan some time for the use and treatment process of a dental crown.
How long do dental crowns last?
A good dental crown can last for many years and decades and be absolutely inconspicuous and symptom-free for you.
- After ten years, on average, about 90 percent of all crowns are still in tact.
- After 15 years, about 75 percent.
- After twenty years, still around the 50 percent.
To prolong the life of your crown, it’s crucial that you maintain good oral hygiene (e.g., with a toothbrush like the Philips Sonicare DiamondClean or Oral-B Pro 6000) at home and visit your dentist for regular follow-up visits.
If you suffer from gum problems in general, you can prevent them by having your teeth professionally cleaned. For more care tips, it’s best to speak with your dentist.
The most important things summarized
Compared to other dental restorations such as expensive implants, the cost of crowns is relatively contained, depending on the material, size and location in the mouth.
Nevertheless, get comprehensive advice from your dentist and clarify the coverage of costs with your health insurance company before treatment to save costs and be able to smile carefree again.
Be sure to talk to your dentist before treatment and check with your health insurance provider about coverage.
To prevent high costs, I also recommend that you keep 3 things in mind:
- Go for regular checkups. This will allow your dentist to treat you early and minimize subsequent damage.
- Don’t forget to record your check-up visits in a bonus booklet, so that you can save even more on the cost of a dental crown.
- If you do not already have supplemental dental insurance, urgently inquire whether it makes sense for you for foreseeable future treatments.
Keep also in mind that a dental crown is durable for several years and the cost per year then actually not so high.
If dental crowns are not an option for you, you can also opt for implants or other dental prostheses as an alternative.
- Also pay attention to proper dental care.
- With the right toothbrush you will succeed a lot easier. Take a look at recommended electric toothbrushes in the test.
With the right prevention, your teeth will remain healthy and expensive treatments spared.