Updated Feb 2023
When your dentist tells you that a tooth is severely damaged, perhaps from an injury or extensive decay that can't be fixed with a filling, they may recommend a dental crown as the best way to restore it. A dental crown (or cap) is a device that covers all or part of an existing tooth to recreate the shape of the original and keep your mouth healthy. Don't worry. The crown will be durable and look just as natural as your naturally grown tooth. Plus, you can care for it by simply brushing, flossing and seeing your dentist for regular cleanings as you usually would.
It's easy to see why dental crowns are so popular. But if you're interested in this restorative treatment, you're probably thinking, "How much does a dental crown cost?" — and whether or not you can afford it. We'll review the average dental crown cost with insurance and without.
- How Much Do Dental Crowns Cost Without Insurance?
- How Much Does a Dental Crown Cost With Insurance?
- How Much Does a Dental Crown Replacement Cost?
- Is Getting a Dental Crown Worth It
How much do dental crowns cost without insurance?
First, let's talk about the average dental crown cost without insurance. Without the financial backing of individual dental insurance plans, many patients requiring treatment must pay the total amount out of pocket.
Generally, the cost of dental crowns without insurance can range anywhere from $500 to $3,000 or more for a single crown. However, the price will vary based on several factors, such as the dental professional you use, the location, the material that's used to make the crown and the tooth that the crown is restoring (e.g., a front tooth crown may cost more or less than one in the back).
Additionally, the materials your dentist uses can affect tooth crown cost. Without insurance, these materials can either make things more or less expensive. When you go in for your treatment, your dentist will tell you about the pros and cons of each type of crown to help you decide which is best for your situation. So, let's answer the question, "What is the average cost of a crown without insurance?" for all the different types of materials.
Porcelain or ceramic
In general, dental crowns made from tooth-colored porcelain are among the most favorable options – and the most expensive. The nice thing about choosing a porcelain crown is that it will look the most natural in your mouth and blend in well with your other teeth. Porcelain crowns are generally used for front teeth.
The average porcelain dental crown cost without insurance can range from $800 to $3,000.
Porcelain fused to metal
You might be able to save some money if you choose to go with a dental crown made of porcelain fused to metal rather than just a porcelain one. Although these crowns are strong, durable and natural looking, a drawback is that they may cause a gray line to appear along your gums. Porcelain fused to metal crowns can go anywhere in the mouth.
Dental crowns made from porcelain fused to metal cost, on average, $500 to $1,500.
Metal or gold
The cost of a metal crown depends largely on the type of alloy used. Naturally, gold dental crowns will cost more than those made from base metal alloys like nickel-chromium or cobalt-chromium. Choosing a metal dental crown may be an excellent way to go if you want a durable option. However, remember that it won't have the color of a natural tooth. Metal crowns are typically used for molars.
The average metal tooth crown cost without insurance can range from $600 to $2,500.
Like porcelain, zirconia crowns are made from ceramic. A zirconia crown may be what you need if you'd prefer a crown that combines metal's durability with the look of porcelain. Zirconia tends to be used for molar crowns because of its strength.
Like a porcelain crown, the average zirconia dental crown cost without insurance will range from $800 to $3,000.
Note: When you get a dental crown, you'll need to see your dentist more than once. The process involves multiple steps, such as preparing the tooth, taking an impression for the crown to be made, applying a temporary crown and placing the crown while ensuring the fit is right. Sometimes, other procedures, such as minor gum surgery, may be necessary too.
Without insurance, costs can begin to add up very fast. Not only will you have to pay the cost of dental crowns without insurance out of pocket, but you'll also need to cover additional fees for exams, X-rays and procedures before and after the crown is set in place.
How much does a dental crown cost with insurance?
We've talked a lot about how much a dental crown could cost you if you pay out of pocket, but how much does a tooth crown cost with an insurance plan? The amount of money you'll be able to save on a dental crown with insurance depends on the plan you're enrolled in, along with some other factors.
For example, if a dental crown is categorized as a major service with your plan, you might be able to save at least 50% on the cost. In other words, if your crown costs $2,000 without insurance, you might need to only pay $1,000 with the help of full insurance coverage.
To get the best deal, you'll want to compare dental insurance plans to choose what fits your unique situation. Consider the cost of using an out-of-network dentist versus one that's in-network. Also, check the copay, deductible, coinsurance and annual maximum, as well as other restrictions and exclusions, to calculate how much you can save. Some plans may provide more coverage than others, and some might only cover crowns that are medically necessary rather than cosmetic.
How much does a dental crown replacement cost?
A high-quality crown will last many years, but it might eventually need to be replaced because of age or damage. Generally, the price of a dental crown replacement is the same as when you get a crown for the first time. This is why older individuals need to remain covered with proper dental insurance for seniors.
Tip: Read the details of your dental plan carefully to see if there are any limits on coverage for replacement dental crowns. For example, an insurer might require you to wait a certain amount of time to become eligible for a replacement crown.
Is getting a dental crown worth it?
Absolutely! Dental crowns are the best way to restore your teeth (and smile). If you need a root canal, your tooth is cracked, or you want to get a dental implant to replace a missing tooth, a crown is a great solution. If you take good care of your crown, it can last upwards of 15 years.
Reduce your dental crown cost with insurance from Direct Benefits
Once you know the full benefits of getting a custom dental crown, you'll understand why it can come with such a hefty price tag. Thankfully, having the right insurance plan can give you access to lower-cost dental crowns, as well as any other minor or major procedures you may need throughout your life. It's simple – getting a dental crown will always cost less with insurance. That's why it's worth checking the available plans in your area with the help of Direct Benefits.
Browse our full selection of available policies that are within your budget today. You'll see how much support they can provide if you're ever in need of a crown. If you need more information about Direct Benefits dental plans, feel free to contact one of our dental insurance agents by phone or live chat. We're always happy to help.
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