I have gotten a new crown and it has been causing me a lot of pain and was crowding my other teeth. I’ve never experienced this with a crown before. Luckily, it is the temporary. My dentist has adjusted the temporary, but just a few hours later it is hurting again. If I push down on it for a while, it relieves the pain for a little while, but then starts hurting again. My dentist thinks that maybe there is decay with one of the adjacent teeth. I don’t agree. What do you think?
Alice S.- Michigan
I think the problem with the dental crown is with your bite. If there was some kind of decay or infection in your other tooth, pressing down on it would not make it feel better. It could be that the adjacent teeth are the ones that need to be adjusted. Maybe when it was crowding your teeth they got knocked out.
It is important this gets dealt with and it may mean your dentist adjusting the other teeth. Pain aside, if you leave this you could end up with TMJ.
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I hear supersmile toothpaste is great at removing surface stains. Can I use it if I have porcelain crowns or will it damage them?
Thomas G.- North Dakota
Supersmile toothpaste is designed to clean dental work, such as all-porcelain crowns and porcelain veneers. It keeps stains away while being non-abrasive.
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I have to get a porcelain crown and thought I’d get my teeth whitened at the same time. My dentist has this thing where you can get your teeth all the way whitened in one appointment. I wondered if it matters which one I do first. Will the crown whiten?
Billye Gaye- Maumelle, AR
Yes, it does matter which one you do first. Porcelain crowns will not whiten. At our office we do CEREC crowns, which are also one appointment. Whatever level of whiteness your dentist makes it is as white as it will ever get. So, I’d do your teeth whitening first, getting them to the level of whiteness you want, and then get the crown made to match that tone, especially if it is a front tooth that is very visible. However, if your crown is a back tooth, like a molar, it may not make a difference what color it is so the timing will not be as relevant.
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I had a tooth that had a root canal. My dentist put a cap on it called a porcelain crown. It fell off today. Do I have to get it put back on, or can I just leave it?
Brad- San Jose, TX
Whenever a crown falls off a tooth, I would see an emergency dentist right away. For a back tooth, it can be more urgent, because the surrounding teeth will start to shift, and it may only take a few days before the crown won’t fit any more, because of the tipping and shifting of the teeth.
The front teeth won’t shift so much or so quickly, but the tooth will be very vulnerable to decay until it is covered. A crown preparation removes most or all of the enamel of your tooth, leaving the softer dentin exposed. This dentin can decay very quickly and could ruin your tooth. Since it has had a root canal treatment, there is no feeling left in the tooth, otherwise you might be experiencing pain. This can lull you into thinking nothing is wrong while your tooth is weakened.
When a crown falls off, it is usually a very simple and short procedure to simply re-cement the original crown. If you wait, it can become more complicated quickly.
Link: Read more about porcelain crowns.
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I had a root canal on a front tooth some time ago. Now it has broken off in the gum and can’t be repaired. My dentist wants to put a crown on the adjacent tooth to support a new crown on the broken tooth, but I’d rather do a dental implant. What do you recommend?
Phillip H.- Baton Rouge
Bear in mind I haven’t examined you, so it is hard to give perfect advice this way. My recommendation would be to go with dental implants. Placing a crown on a front tooth involves shaving all around the tooth in order to make room for it. This reduces both the circumference and the tooth’s resistance to shearing forces. It appears you have fairly aggressive forces at work in your mouth, because you’ve already broken a tooth. You could be facing two broken teeth with this treatment option.
I suspect your dentist is recommending porcelain crowns because he is concerned about matching the implant crown to your natural tooth. On a front tooth this is tricky. It would be easier for him to do two crowns and have them made the same in the lab. If he’s suggesting this, it tells me he is uncomfortable with advanced cosmetic procedures. Don’t push him out of his comfort zone, because you will not like the results.This particular skill is beyond the reach of about 98% of dentists. You need an extremely skilled cosmetic dentist.
My recommendation is that you contact the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry (AACD) and tell them you are looking for an accredited member or accredited fellow in your area. These particular credentials will ensure they know what they’re doing. Then go to him or her for a second opinion on your case.
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