During a root canal, the pulp, which is the soft material in the center of your tooth, and the nerve of your tooth are removed. The procedure is usually needed because of inflammation or infection on the interior of your tooth. After the removal process, the interior of the tooth is cleaned and sealed. In addition, your dentist will apply a dental crown for added protection. Although a dental crown may seem like an added expense, it is actually necessary. Here are a few reasons why a dental crown must be applied after your root canal:
Root canals are often performed on molars. Your back teeth are used for grinding food as you chew, so they endure even more bite pressure than front teeth, which are generally used for initially tearing your food. The extra pressure on a treated molar could cause the tooth to break or crack. A dental crown is used to strengthen the tooth.
Nevertheless, a front tooth will still benefit from the protection of a dental crown. However, for cosmetic purposes, a front crown must match the color and shape of the adjacent teeth seamlessly.
Your tooth has less enamel and dentin.
Once your tooth has undergone an endodontic treatment, which is another name for a root canal, it has less enamel and dentin. The weakened tooth may have a greater chance of fracture than a tooth that is structurally unaltered. Although there is no way to add more dentin or enamel to the tooth, surrounding the tooth with a dental crown will fortify it structurally.
Your tooth may have less water content.
The interior of a normal tooth contains moist, soft pulp, which is living material. However, during a root canal, the interior of a tooth is filled with dental filling material. The hard material may make your tooth more brittle. As a result, additional support may be needed to protect your tooth from damage.
Your tooth needs protection from bacterial infection.
Even though the filling material helps seal the interior of the tooth, your tooth had to be "opened" so that your dentist could perform the procedure. The bacteria that reside in your mouth may eventually find their way back into the tooth and cause problems with your root canal. A crown can help to further seal the tooth so that a bacterial invasion is discouraged.
After a root canal has been performed to treat an infected or inflamed tooth, your dentist or endodontist, such as those at Dodson Endodontics, will apply a dental crown. He or she will determine the proper color and shape for your crown during the course of your endodontic treatment. If you have questions about the process, contact your dentist today.