Root canal procedures are one of the most common dental treatments performed across the United States. It is primarily done to remove the infected pulp tissue and save the tooth before the infection spreads to the surrounding tissues. Root canal treatment usually includes drilling the tooth under local anesthesia. Moreover, the root canals are cleaned and disinfected. Finally, the root canals are filled with a polymer latex-based material called gutta-percha.
Typically the disease and the treatment take a toll on the integrity of the tooth and makes it weak. Therefore, most of the teeth require reinforcement after root canal therapy. A dental crown, also known as root canal crown, usually restores the functionality and health of the tooth in the most effective way. Today’s article will highlight the importance of root canal crown. Moreover, we will discuss the procedure of root canal crown placement.
Why do you need a root canal crown?
Several studies have proven the benefits of root canal crown. Dental crown improves the longevity of the tooth. Moreover, it strengthens the tooth and evenly distributes the biting load. Some of the critical benefits of root canal crown are listed below –
- It restores the weak tooth – often post root canal treatment, the tooth becomes brittle and fragile. A root canal crown increases durability and prevents the tooth from further damage.
- Protects from tooth sensitivity – some patients may experience slight sensitivity and a feeling of discomfort after the root canal treatment. The crown covers the tooth structure and prevents tooth sensitivity to hot and cold food and beverages (1)
- Provides aesthetics – some root canal crown are available in various toot hh shades. Moreover, they cover the black and grey damaged parts of the tooth caused by dental infection. root canal crown, therefore, provide a natural-looking appearance
- Prevents the tooth from further infection by creating a seal around the treated tooth
Which teeth are suitable for root canal crown?
Usually, the requirement for root canal crown depends on the location of the tooth in the mouth. Typically, the root canal crown is used to cover the back teeth, such as molars and premolars. This is because the molars and premolars are often used for grinding the food. Therefore a lot of biting force is put on the brittle back teeth post-treatment. (2)
Usually, front teeth do not require root canal crown. A permanent tooth-colored restoration can suffice. However, extensively damaged front teeth may require replacement with a root canal crown.
What are the types of root canal crown?
There are several types of root canal crowns, depending on the needs of the patient. Some of them are listed below –
- Metal or gold crown – these are mainly used to restore teeth that do not require aesthetics. Moreover, they require minimal tooth preparation.
- All ceramic crown – all-ceramic crown provides a natural-looking appearance. They are primarily made of porcelain. (3)
- Metal fused porcelain crown – this consists of a metal base coated with porcelain to improve the aesthetics of the patient.
- Zirconia – zirconium crowns are superior in aesthetic quality and are usually fabricated to restore the front teeth. It is highly durable and requires minimal tooth preparation.
What is the procedure for getting a root canal crown?
The procedure for root canal crown consists of several steps and can be done in the following way –
- First, the tooth is numbed using a local anesthetic
- Preliminary impressions are taken to record accurate details of the mandibular and maxillary arches. This will aid in creating a perfect crown that fits well on the tooth.
- The tooth is trimmed and prepared according to the type of crown required for replacement. Typically, the dental crown mimics the visible portion of the tooth and fits like a cap on the tooth structure. Therefore, the tooth needs to be reduced in size to accommodate the thickness of the crown. (4)
- A final impression is recorded to accurately measure the details of the prepared tooth, including its shape and margins. The dentist will then send the impression to the dental lab for crown fabrication.
- Usually, it takes around 2-3 days for a crown to be ready for placement. Therefore, teeth that have a cosmetic necessity may be covered by a temporary crown made from resin material.
- A temporary crown is used to maintain the functionality and aesthetics of the smile until the permanent crown is ready for placement.
- At the final appointment, the temporary crown is removed, and the tooth is replaced with a permanent dental crown bonded with dental cement.
- The dentist checks for any high points and tight contacts to correct it and provide a comfortable bite to the patient. (5)
- Post-operative instructions are given to avoid hard and chewy food ad maintain good oral hygiene.
Take away message
Root canal procedure is an invasive dental treatment that often leaves the tooth brittle and fragile. Therefore, a root canal treated tooth usually requires some reinforcement to maintain the longevity of the tooth. Root canal crown is a viable dental prosthesis that helps to strengthen the treated tooth and increase the shelf life of the tooth. Moreover, the root canal crown evenly distributes the biting load and saves the tooth from fracture or damage.
Typically, the back teeth require root canal crown are they are used for grinding and crushing the food. Front teeth can be restored with a permanent tooth-colored filling. However, extensive damage to the tooth structure may lead to the replacement of the tooth with a root canal crown. If you have undergone a root canal treatment, consult your dentist to determine the necessity of a crown replacement.