I am concerned about the toxicity of my metal crowns because they contain palladium. I want all six crowns replaced with veneers, so I will know that I don’t have metal in my mouth. How do I find a dentist who will replace them? Thank you. Len from Manhattan
Thank you for your question.
Palladium is a moderately biocompatible noble metal in the platinum group. Sensitivities to the metal are rare, but it is possible to react to palladium. Most dental crowns and bridges with a metal framework contain palladium.
Still, if you want a metal-free alternative, consider these factors:
Can You Replace Dental Crowns with Veneers?
A dentist is unable to replace dental crowns with veneers. Preparing teeth for crowns requires shaving each tooth on all sides to allow the crown to fit over it. Porcelain veneers only cover the fronts of your teeth and require minimal preparation. After a dentist shaves tooth structure in preparation for crowns, you will not have enough tooth structure for veneers. You can only get new crowns.
The Role of Metals in the Human Body
Our daily nutrition and life rely on metal ions.
- Sodium – As a pure metal, sodium is toxic. It becomes salt when combined with chlorine.
- Iron – We cannot consume metallic iron, but iron ions in our hemoglobin give our blood its red color and help our muscles store and use oxygen.
- Other metal ions – Other metals that we need for a healthy diet and nutrition include:
What about Ceramic Crowns?
- Lithium – Sodium-based is in ocean water. Lithium disilicate is a high-strength ceramic. E.max crowns contain lithium disilicate.
- Zirconium – Zirconium dioxide or zirconia is so strong that engineers use it in aerodynamics. It is more durable than other ceramics for dental restorations. Zirconia crowns make exceptionally durable dental bridges.
- Porcelain – Cosmetic dentists mainly use porcelain crowns for front teeth because porcelain is not as strong as lithium or zirconia. Dental porcelain contains kaolin, a clay that contains silica and the ion aluminum oxide, which is not a metal.
We recommend scheduling a consultation with an advanced cosmetic dentist to discuss your concerns about your metal-based crowns and alternatives for replacing them.
Lowell, Massachusetts, accredited cosmetic dentist Dr. Michael Szarek sponsors this post.