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Dentistry/implant supported crown size



I recently had an implant-supported splinted porcelain-fused-to-metal crown placed on the first molar and second premolar on the lower left side. The size and shape of the crown is noticeable smaller than the size and shape of the same teeth on the right side. This took me by surprise as I thought the crown would be around the same size and shape as the same teeth on the right side. Is this normal? I would think that crowns should look as close to real teeth as possible.

Another thing that took me by surprise is a metal border that is visible around the base of the crown, particulary on the side facing the tongue. What's the purpose of this metal border. Is this normal? Why wouldn't all the crown be covered with porcelain?  

I look forward to your reply.

Dear Kerry,

Many dentists who place crowns on implants, will make the implant crown smaller than the natural tooth so that the implant experiences less trauma than your natural teeth.  This is one way to assure the longevity of your implant.  I generally will make my implant crowns look as much like the surrounding teeth as possible.  I believe that implanted roots are more durable than natural tooth roots, and can stand up to the normal stresses placed on a tooth at least as well as natural roots.  This is an intentional choice by the dentist who makes the crown.  Both methods are acceptable.

The design of most porcelain to metal crowns will leave a metal border toward the gum line.  This provides more strength to the porcelain, as well as a preventative to porcelain chipping.   This is why I am moving toward the elimination of metal from my crowns, and toward using Zirconia, Ceramoresin or Lithium Disilicate.  These products are very strong, very durable, biocompatible, have a natural appearance, and do not require the use of a metal substrate.

Your crown is still the most widely used type, and should last a very long time.


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Howard Finnk, D.D.S., P.A., CEO


I am a Family, Implant and Cosmetic dentist. I will answer questions on any aspect of dentistry and matters relating to the smile, gums, jaws and lower face. Member American Dental Association, Florida Dental Association, Broward County Dental Association, and Atlantic Coast District Dental Association. I have served as District Council Member of Alpha Omega, as well as serving for one term as its President. I am also a member of The Vedder Honors Society, Broward Dental Research Clinic, and Mount Sinai Hospital Guild. I have served as a Volunteer for Project Dental Health and The Tri-County Dental Health Council.


Having attained over 30 years of clinical experience in private practice in Michigan, in 2001 I was re-certified by taking and passing the Florida State Dental Board Examination. After moving to Florida, I spent nearly 10 years re-honing my skills while working as an Associate Dentist for several large dental groups. In September, 2004, I was appointed Adjunct Clinical Professor at Nova University's College of Dental Medicine. I am certified in placement of Mini Dental Implants, and I am Director of The Florida Implant Center ( On March 1, 2010, at the age of 62, I began all over again by buying a dental practice near my home in the Fort Lauderdale area. As sole owner and Chief Dental Officer of the new Nob Hill Dental Center (, I can now carefully provide dental care to patients who care, all within a caring, joyful environment. Over my career lifetime, I have provided thousands of diagnoses, fillings, crowns, bridges, root canals, periodontal treatments, TMJ therapies, partials, dentures and extractions, and dozens of implants for my patients. The only aspect of dentistry with which I have very little experience is orthodontics.

American Dental Association, Florida Dental Association, Broward County Dental Association, Atlantic Coast District Dental Society, Vedder Honors Society, Broward Dental Research Clinic, Alpha Omega Alumni Association, and American Association of Dental Implantologists. Formerly, American Academy of General Dentistry, Michigan Dental Association, Macomb Dental Society, Detroit District Dental Society, Tri-County Dental Health Council (a charitable dental care organization)

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Bachelor of Arts and Sciences in Psychology from Wayne State University Doctor of Dental Surgery from University of Detroit College of Dentistry Adjunct Clinical Professor, Special Needs Department, Nova Southeastern University College of Dental Medicine, Fort Lauderdale, Florida

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