Root canals can be painful but they are a very effective dental procedure that can save a tooth that would otherwise have to be extracted. However, many patients ask how long a root canal lasts without a crown and the answer is — it depends.
When a root canal is performed, a dentist removes nasty bacteria-filled matter from the center of the tooth and then cleans and fills it. However, the weakened tooth is left vulnerable to damage and decay after the treatment. That’s why it is important to cap the tooth with a dental crown. A tooth without a crown can fracture at any time, making it more susceptible to further damage and decay.
A recent study showed that teeth that do not receive a crown following a root canal treatment have a much lower survival rate than those with one. The researchers analyzed data from the National Dental Practice-Based Research Network, which includes 99 small group and solo dentistry practices across the United States. The results of the study were published in the Journal of Dental Research.
The longevity of a tooth that has received a root canal is dependent on several factors, including its initial condition, the quality of the treatment, and the type of filling material used. In addition, the position of the treated tooth can also affect its longevity without a crown. Teeth located in the front of the mouth are subjected to less biting and chewing force than those at the back of the mouth, which makes them more resilient to root canal treatment. However, patients should seek a crown as soon as they finish their root canal to prevent further complications.