How Much Does a Crown Cost Without Insurance?

Taking care of our dental health is essential for a beautiful smile and overall well-being.

Dental crowns are a common dental procedure used to restore damaged or decayed teeth.

However, the cost of dental treatments can often be a concern, especially for those without insurance coverage.

In this blog, we will explore about how much does a crown cost without insurance.

What is a Dental Crown?

Dental crowns are protective coverings placed over damaged teeth to restore their shape, strength and function.

They can be made of various materials including porcelain, metal alloys or a combination of both.

Dental crowns not only enhance the appearance of teeth but also provide protection and durability.

Importance of dental insurance

Dental insurance plays a crucial role in managing dental costs and maintaining oral health.

It provides:

  • Coverage for preventive treatments,
  • Routine check-ups,
  • Often includes partial coverage for dental crowns.

Before selecting an insurance plan, consider factors such as coverage limits, waiting periods and out-of-pocket expenses.

Also see: How Much Does a Filling Cost Without Insurance?

How much does a crown cost without insurance?

How much does a crown cost without insurance

The cost of dental crowns can vary significantly depending on factors such as location and material choice. On average, the cost ranges from $800 to $1,500 per tooth.

Types of Dental Crowns and Cost

Type of Dental CrownAverage Cost (Without Insurance)
Porcelain-fused-to-metal (PFM) Crown$800 – $1,500
All-Ceramic Crown$800 – $2,000
Zirconia Crown$900 – $3,000
Gold Crown$1,200 – $2,500
Temporary Crown$200 – $600

Prices may be higher in metropolitan areas compared to rural regions due to higher operating costs.

Factors affecting the cost of dental crowns:

Several factors influence the cost of dental crowns, including:

  • Different materials have varying costs.
  • Extensive dental work may require additional time and resources.
  • Prices may vary depending on the region and the expertise of the dentist.
  • Preparatory work or root canals can increase the overall cost.
  • Cost variations exist between urban and rural areas due to differences in living expenses.

Alternative options for affordable dental crowns without insurance

Alternative options for affordable dental crowns without insurance

If you don’t have dental insurance, there are several options to make dental crowns more affordable:

1) Dental discount plans – These plans offer reduced rates on dental procedures for a monthly or annual fee.

2) Dental schools and teaching clinics – These institutions often provide lower-cost dental services supervised by experienced professionals.

3) Dental tourism – Traveling to countries with lower dental costs can be an option for cost-conscious individuals.

4) Flexible payment options and financing plans – Many dental offices offer payment plans or financing options to spread out the cost.

5) Negotiating prices with dental providers – In some cases, discussing your financial situation and exploring payment options directly with the dentist may lead to more affordable arrangements.

What to do if you don’t have dental insurance?

If you don’t have dental insurance, there are steps you can take to ensure affordable dental care:

  • Research community clinics, dental outreach programs or low-cost providers in your area.
  • Set aside funds specifically for dental treatments, creating a personal safety net.
  • Many dental offices offer financing plans with manageable monthly payments.
  • Maintaining proper oral care can reduce the likelihood of needing extensive dental treatments.

Why are crowns for teeth so expensive?

Crowns for teeth can be expensive due to various factors.

  • The materials used such as porcelain or metal alloys can be costly.
  • The process involves skilled dental professionals who invest time and expertise.
  • Laboratory fees, overhead costs and the need for customization further contribute to the expense.

How much does it cost to put a crown back on a tooth?

On average, the cost can range from $800 to $1,500 per tooth. This estimate includes the cost of removing the old crown, preparing the tooth, taking impressions and placing the new crown.

Additionally, if any additional procedures such as root canal treatment or build-up are required, they may incur additional costs.

What happens if I can’t afford a crown?

If you can’t afford a dental crown, there are a few options you can consider.

1) Discuss your financial situation with your dentist. They may be able to provide alternative treatment options or work out a payment plan that fits your budget.

2) Some dental schools or community clinics offer reduced-cost or free dental services including crowns, as part of their training programs.

3) If the crown is not immediately necessary for your oral health, you can prioritize saving money or seeking assistance to afford the treatment in the future.

What is the cheapest crown for your tooth?

The cheapest crown option for a tooth is typically a traditional metal crown, also known as a stainless steel crown.

These crowns are durable and cost-effective, making them a popular choice for restoring primary teeth in children.

However, if you’re looking for a crown for an adult tooth, the most affordable option would likely be a porcelain-fused-to-metal (PFM) crown. These crowns consist of a metal base fused with porcelain, offering a balance between aesthetics and affordability.

Can you crown a dead tooth?

No, it is not possible to crown a dead tooth. When a tooth dies, it means that the inner pulp, which contains the nerves and blood vessels, has become necrotic or non-vital.

A dead tooth lacks the vital tissues necessary for long-term survival.

In such cases, root canal treatment or extraction may be necessary to address the issue.

How long can I stay without a crown?

It is advisable not to delay getting a crown as it helps protect and strengthen the tooth, preventing further damage or potential tooth loss.

Waiting too long without a crown can lead to complications like tooth fracture or decay, which may require more extensive treatment.

Can I get a crown without a root canal?

In many cases, a crown can be placed on a tooth without the need for a root canal procedure.

If the tooth’s structure is intact and the pulp is healthy, a crown can be placed directly on the tooth to restore its shape, strength and appearance.

If the tooth has extensive decay or damage that affects the pulp, a root canal may be necessary before the crown can be placed to ensure the long-term health and functionality of the tooth.

Do I need a crown for a cracked tooth?

A dental crown may be recommended to protect and strengthen the tooth.

Cracked teeth can lead to further damage like fractures or infections, so a crown can provide support and prevent further complications.

For minor cracks that don’t extend deeply into the tooth, alternative treatments such as dental bonding or a filling may be sufficient.

Is it painful to get a crown?

The crown placement procedure is usually not painful because local anesthesia is administered to numb the tooth and surrounding tissues.

Some patients may experience minor discomfort or sensitivity during the procedure, such as pressure or mild soreness.

After the anesthesia wears off, it’s normal to feel some sensitivity or soreness in the treated tooth and surrounding gums for a few days.

What is the average age to get a crown?

The average age to get a crown can vary depending on individual dental health and needs. The doctor’s advice is to have a crown done at least 18 years old

Which is better a crown or root canal?

Both procedures serve different purposes: a crown strengthens and protects a tooth, while a root canal addresses infection or inflammation.

The best option is determined by the individual’s oral health and the dentist’s evaluation.

How many teeth do you need for a crown?

A minimum of about 1/4 of the natural tooth structure needs to be present for a dental crown to be placed.

This requirement ensures that there is enough tooth structure to provide support and stability for the crown.

How many crowns can a dentist do at once?

In a single dental appointment, a dentist may typically place one to three crowns. This allows them to ensure proper fitting, alignment and bite adjustment for each crown.

In some cases, such as when using CAD/CAM technology or working with a specialized team, a dentist may be able to place more crowns in a single visit.

How do you prepare a tooth for a crown?

Preparing a tooth for a crown typically involves several steps.

  1. The dentist will numb the area with local anesthesia.
  2. Then, they will reshape the tooth by removing a small portion of its outer structure to accommodate the crown.
  3. The amount of tooth structure removed depends on the specific case.
  4. After reshaping, the dentist will take impressions of the tooth and surrounding teeth to create an accurate mold for the crown.
  5. A temporary crown is placed while a dental lab fabricates the permanent crown.
  6. In the final visit, the temporary crown is removed and the permanent crown is cemented or bonded onto the prepared tooth, restoring its appearance and function.

How long does it take to do a full set of crowns?

Generally, it takes two to three dental appointments to complete the process.

The entire process typically spans a few weeks, allowing for customization and the involvement of a dental lab.

Can you eat after getting a crown?

Yes, you can eat after getting a crown. It is recommended to wait until the anesthesia wears off completely before eating to avoid accidentally biting your cheek or tongue.

Once the numbness subsides, you can consume soft foods that do not require excessive chewing. Avoid very hot or cold foods to prevent sensitivity.

It is also advisable to chew on the opposite side of your mouth that could potentially dislodge or damage the crown.

What foods to avoid with a crown?

Hard and sticky foods should be avoided as they can cause the crown to chip, crack or come loose.

Examples of foods to avoid include hard candies, popcorn kernels, ice cubes, tough meats, chewing on ice and sticky candies like taffy or caramels.

Be cautious with foods that require excessive biting or chewing force.


How much does a crown cost without insurance?

On average, the cost of a crown without insurance ranges from $800 to $1,500.

Are there cheaper options for crowns without insurance?

Some dental clinics may offer discounted rates or payment plans but the overall cost will still depend on the type of crown and the dentist’s fees.

Can the cost of a crown vary based on the tooth’s location?

Yes, the cost can vary based on whether the crown is for a front tooth or a molar, with molar crowns typically being more expensive due to their complexity.

Do different crown materials affect the price?

Yes, the choice of materials like porcelain, metal or porcelain-fused-to-metal affects the cost. Porcelain crowns tend to be more expensive than metal ones.

Are there additional costs apart from the crown itself?

Yes, additional costs like consultations, X-rays and temporary crowns may be involved.

Does the geographic location affect crown costs?

Yes, dental costs can vary based on the region or city. Urban areas tend to have higher prices compared to rural or less affluent areas.

Is it wise to delay getting a crown due to cost concerns?

It’s generally not recommended to delay necessary dental treatments. Untreated dental issues can worsen, potentially leading to more expensive and complex procedures later on.

Final words

The cost of dental crowns without insurance may seem daunting but there are various options available to make them more affordable.

By understanding the cost factors, exploring alternative options and considering dental insurance, individuals can make informed decisions about their oral health.

Remember, investing in dental care today can lead to a healthier, more confident smile tomorrow.

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