I’m a little frustrated. I had a dental crown and root canal treatment. I was horseback riding and had an accident which broke the dental crown. I had an emergency dental appointment and they fitted me for a new crown. It kept feeling really weird. I let it go for a while, but then the crown fell off after a second accident. When I went in to see the dentist again he said the tooth was eaten up by decay and needed to be extracted and replaced. How can that happen? Did the dentist do something wrong when he replaced it the first time? How would I not feel pain with that much decay? What kind of tooth replacement are best in these circumstances?
I don’t think your dentist would have done anything to cause decay. A lot has gone on with that poor tooth, especially given you’ve had two riding accidents that have knocked off your crowns. Teeth that have had a root canal treatment become very brittle and vulnerable. That is why we almost always place a crown on the tooth.
There are many ways bacteria could have gotten in there. There is a very sound reason why you didn’t feel any pain. The root canal treatment cleared out all the pulp in your tooth. There wouldn’t have been anything really to feel. That tooth is dead.
So where do you go from here?
Tooth Replacement Options
After you have your teeth extracted, it will be important to replace it. Without that, the adjacent teeth will shift and tip into the open space. The best replacement option is a dental implant. These mimic your natural teeth by placing a prosthetic root inside the jawbone, then places a dental crown on the implant to serve as the visible part of your tooth.
Another good option, when it comes to replacing a single tooth, is a dental bridge. This suspends a false tooth between two dental crowns. Getting a bridge makes more sense if one or both of the adjacent teeth already need a crown. Without that, you have to grind down healthy tooth structure, which isn’t a great option if it is avoidable.
This blog is brought to you by Hilton Head Cosmetic Dentist Dr. Bonnie Rothwell.