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Root canal/permanent or temp crown?



Jul 20, 2022
Los Angeles
Hi all,
I posted last week about an upcoming RC (I am still planning to update my post but waiting for the process to be completed).

background: my dentist drilled old cavities in tooth 30 and 31 (back two molars in lower), had the impressions made for permanent crowns and during that time, I had pain etc leading to rc on 31 (which is currently in process). 30 is questionable which may or may not need a rc as well (when I consulted with the endo, and we did multiple tests on both teeth - it seemed 30 was ok). So my dentist had made ONE temp crown covering both teeth, not two separate ones, when I had originally gone in …not sure why.

So my dentist wants me to get the permanents (already made) asap after 31 rc. He said since they are done, it would be best to place them. My endo does NOT want me to do this, and wants me to keep the temporary for a few more weeks on both teeth, just in case. (When I told my general dentist that the endo said to place the crowns with temp cement, he said the temp cement is just like permanent so it wouldn’t do much good).
I was thinking maybe permanent on 31 at least, since it’s going to be a completed rc.

I’m not sure what to do. Also at my recent rc visit (it’s still not done), I guess the temporary got damaged when endo removed it so tooth 30 has broken on the side. The dentist can’t see me until Monday (hopefully) so I’m hoping he can replace it.

So my 2 questions bc I’m so anxious about this and don’t know what to do.

1. Which advice makes the most sense to do in terms of permanent crowns after the 31 rc? I’m so confused.

2. Will my teeth get damaged if I ask the dentist to do new temp crowns separately for both teeth, or will it wreck the current rc treatment and should I wait for the treatment to be completed?

I hate being in this state of waiting to see if 30 will need a rc. It consumes my thoughts and I just get so nervous.

Thank you so much for any advice and input
If 30 does need root treated after the new crown is fitted then the new crown will be destroyed doing the RCT, you can see why your dentist is not keen on fitting this, since presumably you wouldn't be happy paying for another crown?

Putting the permanent crown onto 31 if the RCT has been successfully completed seems like a good idea to me, but there must be some reason why your dentist doesn't want to do this? Is it an insurance thing?
Temp cement isn't a great option, if the crowns fit well (and I've no reason to suppose they won't!) then even super weak cement will hold them tightly enough in place to make it unlikely that they can be removed without damaging them. We're back to who's paying if it goes wrong? :)
New temp crowns would probably be the best way out of this, or repair the existing temps as an option?
@Gordon thank you so much for the reply! My general dentist said it wouldn’t be a big deal to go through the permanent crown if a rc is needed on tooth 30, but my endo is the expert for rc (and makes sense what you said above) so I’m trying to figure out best way forward. So I appreciate your reply so much.

So I guess repairing the current temp crown is the best option until the rc 31 is completed. Im going to ask my endo again why he doesn’t want 31 crowned once it’s finished.
So if I end up crowning 31 after completion, I think what you say makes sense: I can see if my general dentist is ok with permanent 31 and making a new temporary for 30 (that is possible right?). My dentist said he was concerned also bc both teeth are down to the dentin part (so not much tooth left). This whole thing makes me even more nervous.

If a new temp can’t be made for 30 only, then I guess keeping this broken one. I’m assuming we are waiting a few weeks to see if I end up getting pain in 30?
**in the first paragraph, I meant the endo is the expert in rc (obvi) and he’s the one who said not to lay the permanent on that tooth after 31 is completed (though I think I need to speak w him on why)
It wouldn't be a big deal to go through the new crown, but it would wreck the crown :)

Yes, waiting for a few weeks to see if 30 is OK is probably the best way forward.
Thank you so much Gordon - your advice and input is so valued
So after rc visit 2, the endo chipped temporary crown on the side. My tongue is SO sore from this small jagged edge on my temp :( it hurts to talk and eat. So I went to my dentist yesterday but he didn’t do anything, nor file it..maybe bc I’m due for another rc visit at the end of the week and he said it will get damaged more when it’s removed. Idk why he didn’t fix that jagged to file? But he did give me dental wax, which I tried to use today. It doesn’t stick well. And so I guess my question is: can this help until Friday? And perhaps the endo can fix this for me Friday? I have an appt next week with my general dentist to make a new temporary crown (since the endo wants me to wait a few weeks as mentioned above) so just wondering how to function the rest of the week. Can I sleep with dental wax? The short time I managed to keep it on today was life saving
Just get an emery board or small nail file and fix it yourself, or get somebody to do it for you? Won't do any harm.
Oh I didn’t know that would be an option. Thank you!