If a tooth needs a root canal treatment but doesn’t have any pain, is it a dental emergency or can it wait? On that note, if it can wait, how long can it wait?
This is kind of tricky to answer because I have not examined your tooth. I think, however, I can give you some general guidelines. If the tooth is hurting in any way (which you say yours is not) then, I would consider it a dental emergency and you would need to get treatment as soon as possible. You would not necessarily need to schedule it for that day, but as soon as they can.
I would say that if it starts hurting again, go in fairly soon as well. Both of those scenarios indicate that you have an active tooth infection that needs to be treated. Dental infections spread and can blow up pretty quickly. You do not want it spreading to your heart, lungs, or brain, all of which are close to your jaw.
If it is not hurting and has not for a while, you should be able to wait. I had a colleague who had a patient with a tooth that needed a root canal that waited several years. This was only possible because the infection was not active.
What was interesting to me about this case is that apparently, even though the infection wasn’t active, the fact that it had been infected was having an impact on his health. The patient felt unexplainably worn down all the time, even though he was getting enough sleep and his thyroid levels were good. The cause turned out to be the tooth. After he had his root canal treatment, he told my colleague that he felt better than he had in a while.
I went to my dentist because of pain with pressure and sensitivity to hot and cold. My dentist suggested a crown and we decided on a CEREC crown for the first time on a back tooth. I’d had other crowns before so I wasn’t new to the gig. I like how fast it went and having the crown that day. A few days later though, I still had the same problem. I went back to see the dentist and he checked to make sure it was on right. He felt it was and told me to give it eight weeks. That was discouraging because I was going on vacation, but what else could I do? I bought some pain meds and left town. I was in so much pain and practically lived on those pain meds. At about the eight-week mark, it did start to get better. That’s a lot of pain to go through with a crown. Normally, I have the pain go away with immediate relief. Is this a pattern with a CEREC crown?
I would like you to see a different dentist and have this looked at, including an x-ray. CEREC crowns are equally effective as traditional crowns. The biggest difference is the same-day service. When there is the type of pain you were having, just crowning the tooth will not necessarily solve the problem on its own. The fact that it was still hurting afterward bears this out in your case.
With it gradually getting better over that length of time, it sounds more to me like the pulp of your tooth was dying. I’d like to know if the original problem was some type of dental infection.
Usually, when there is a sensitive tooth that also needs a crown, the first thing to do is remove any old fillings or decay. Then place some glass isomer or bonded build-up material and give it a bit of time. This is to see if the tooth settles down. If it doesn’t and the pain persists, that is a signal the tooth needs a root canal treatment.
Have this looked at elsewhere so you don’t risk an infection flaring back up.
I have eight porcelain veneers that I love. I recently found out that one of the teeth needs a root canal treatment. I am a bit worried the procedure will damage my porcelain veneer. Is this safe or will I need to replace the veneer?
If your tooth needs a root canal treatment, you don’t want to leave the infection untreated. That would be quite dangerous. Dental emergencies have a way of turning into life-threatening medical emergencies when you don’t get timely care.
To put your mind at ease about your porcelain veneer, though, it shouldn’t have any impact on the porcelain veneer itself. One thing that does become an issue is the underlying tooth turning dark, which in turn will cause your porcelain veneer to turn dark. There is a way to forestall this, however.
Have your dentist carefully follow these instructions if they don’t already know this procedure.
The most important step is to make sure they get all the underlying material out of the canals from the root tip all the way to the crown of the tooth.
Once that is done, your dentist will want to put in a white fiberglass post. From there, he or she will fill the remainder of space with white composite material.
Doing this will keep the tooth white much longer than would otherwise be possible. It works even better when the tooth has a porcelain veneer, as yours does.