Why A Dentist May Suggest A Crown Following A Root Canal

Dentists have their reasons for doing things a certain way. Some reasons, like prescribing a root canal, are obvious. Others, such as suggesting a combo procedure that includes a root canal and a crown, may not seem that obvious. Here is why your dentist may suggest that you get both the root canal and a crown for the same tooth.

A Root Canal Just Saves the Tooth from Inner Decay

When you have a tooth that has inner decay, the root canal procedure prevents the tooth from rotting out entirely and creating a pus-filled abscess. The tooth is cleaned out and filled with a dental cement. The tooth itself is officially dead, but it stays in your mouth and prevents you from infection and a gaping hole. That is all the root canal does. If you have a partially rotten or broken tooth on top of the root canal issue, the root canal will not save the tooth in its entirety.

The Crown Saves the Crown of the Tooth and Makes It Appear Healthier

When the tooth has been restored through a root canal, but there is still an issue with missing pieces or slight rot, your dentist will suggest a crown. You can refuse, but after all the work you just had to save the interior of the tooth, it is not a good idea to allow the crown of the tooth to continue chipping and/or disintegrating. Placing a crown over the crown of the tooth removes the damaged and rotting bits, and it makes your tooth appear much healthier that before the crown was installed.

If You Have Bruxism, the Tooth Could Be Destroyed

If part of the problem with the tooth in question is that you have nighttime bruxism (you grind your teeth), your dentist may want to prevent shattering the recently repaired tooth. Because there is no living tissue left in this tooth, constant grinding on it can cause it to break into bits over time. By placing a crown over it, your grinding habit is halted and the tooth is protected indefinitely (so long as you choose the porcelain crown). Your dentist is suggesting a treatment plan that can help you keep that tooth right where it is and prevent it from breaking into several pieces. That is just smart, when you consider what would otherwise happen to the tooth, and even to your mouth as a whole.