What’s The Difference Between A Root Canal And Crown? 

Aug 2, 2021

If you’ve ever been in need of a root canal, you may have heard your dentist talk about dental crowns. But what’s the difference between a root canal and crown? And when you need an affordable root canal in Phoenix, what do you need to know about these procedures?

When the inner “pulp” of a tooth becomes infected due to damage or decay, you may be in need of a root canal. This is a procedure where the dentist will remove the infected pulp, clean out the tooth, and refill and seal the tooth. Part of that sealing process includes capping the tooth with a crown. 

Root canals almost always require a dental crown.

This is because during a root canal treatment, the dentist will grind down the original crown of your tooth to treat the infected pulp in the roots of your tooth. A dental crown is placed on top of the tooth that has been treated with a root canal so it can continue to function.

You may only need a dental crown after a root canal on your back grinding teeth. This includes your molars and premolars. Front teeth, canines, and incisors may not require a dental crown, though they will need some sort of sealing, restorative treatment.

While crowns are placed after root canals, that doesn’t mean that a crown always indicates a root canal. In fact,  it is not always necessary to get a root canal when a dentist places a dental crown. Sometimes these oral prosthetics, also known as caps or teeth caps, are used to protect the visible part of a tooth. This can be done for cosmetic purposes, to make a tooth look more even and uniform, or it can be done to prevent further damage. 

While getting a dental crown can either be a necessary or a cosmetic procedure, root canal treatment is only done when there is a problem. And it is always followed by the placement of a crown or other sealant to protect the tooth.

Crowns can be a great option to preserve the integrity of your natural tooth. One study found that just 5% to 7% of teeth that receive crown restorations end up needing root canal treatment. 

Additionally, research has shown that a dental crown following a root canal improves the chance of long-term tooth survival. 

Unfortunately, the teeth underneath the crown can still get damaged by bacteria, which can cause cavities and tooth decay. That is why even with a dental crown, it’s still important to maintain proper oral hygiene and regular visits to your dentist for cleanings and checkups. If a dental crown becomes compromised in any way, it may allow bacteria to become trapped underneath the crown which can lead to decay and another pulp infection.

Our affordable team of experienced dental professionals is conveniently located in Phoenix and can attend to your root canal and crown needs. If you’ve had a dental crown in Phoenix and are concerned you might need a root canal, come in and see us right away. With a good root canal and crown, you can maintain your natural teeth for as long as possible, without pain.