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Crown or Veneer for Root Canal Tooth?

I have a root canal on my left bottom, front tooth. I have seen a couple of dentists, and they all have recommended different treatments such as a veneer, a crown and internal whitening.

I'm so confused. I don't know which treatment to choose for my root canal tooth. Please advise.

Doctor Answers 12

Root canal treated teeth need strength

The standard/rule of thumb answer is: crown. After a tooth is hollowed out to clean out the affected nerve, the tooth is weaker and likely to fracture. Covering up completely is best.

If the access hole is small, sometimes nothing is needed, but the lower front teeth are so small that small holes are still very large (by proportion). If the access was from the front of the tooth, a veneer might work.

So truly, the best person to ask is a dentist that is right there looking at the situation.

Restoration For Root canal

Classically, all teeth treated with root canals should get a crown. So if you have been recommended getting a crown, there is nothing wrong with the recommendation, "technically" speaking

In a more contemporary view, we have research that shows that with endodontic therapy, you have higher success rates with the tooth, if there is more tooth structure remaining--- it depends how much residual anatomy is left over. If the endodontic access was very small (micro), some teeth (such as teeth #s 23,24,25,26) are candidates for just a composite resin.

However, most teeth that receive a root canal have significant damage and would require a crown, or an onlay to help better distribute the forces of mastication (chewing). In general, posterior (BACK) teeth benefit from full coverage restorations. A 10 yr followup study found that POSTERIOR teeth that DID NOT receive  full coverage crowns were lost 6X often when compared to teeth that DID receive full coverage (Aquilino et al).

Answer depends on how much tooth structure is left based off of 1) how deep the original decay was, and 2) how conservative access for root canal instrumentation.

As with all information on the internet, seek the consultation of you local dentist prior to choosing treatment.

Hope that helps!

Full crown or veneer for root canan treated tooth

As a general rule, full crowns are recommended following root canal therapy to protect the biting strength of the treated  tooth and protect it from a non-repairable fracture.  For this reason I would lean towards the full crown. 

After root canal, a crown or veneer

I don't think you could go wrong choosing to have a crown done on a root canal tooth. You might get away with a veneer only if there is very little tooth structure missing. As far as internal bleaching, you usually only need that if you aren't doing a crown.

Paul D. Kantor, DDS
Cleveland Dentist
5.0 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

Proctect root canal tooth

Once a root canal is performed and nerve is removed tooth can become brittle & fracture a crown is usually  placed in order to protect the tooth.

Lawrence Gilbert, DDS
Woodbury Dentist
5.0 out of 5 stars 1 review

RCT treated tooth


Its a very good question . There are different options for a RCT treared tooth , specially if it is discolored. Its very important for  a tooth to have a full coverage after treatment as the tooth becomes brittle . Veneer covers just the front surface and does not provide the full coverage. Internal bleaching can be an option only when you are not planning to get any crown or veneer after RCT. The best option is to get a crown in order to prevent the fracture of the tooth n future.

Dalvir Pannu, DDS
San Jose Dentist

Veneer or crown on a tooth with root canal treatment

For teeth in the back of the mouth and middle area (molars and premolars), full coverage crown is recommended. However for front teeth, it may be possible to do a veneer or a partial coverage crown, depending on the tooth itself and howmuch of healthy structure it has remaining.

H. Ryan Kazemi, DMD
Bethesda Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 reviews

Best treatment

The best option is to have a crown because a root canal tooth will be always a very weak tooth and the crown will protect it much better than a veneer.

Thank you,

Dr. Barba

Antoaneta Barba, DDS
Santa Ana Dentist
5.0 out of 5 stars 1 review

Most teeth treated with root canal therapy need crowns, in some cases front teeth do not

Typically, teeth treated with root canal therapy should recieve a crown if they are located in the back of the mouth.

Some front teeth can simply be filled with a filling. The determination is a clinical one that is made by the treating dentist and is specific to the circumstance leading to the root canal. If there is a lot of healty remaining natural tooth, a crown may not be necessary on a front tooth. Most root canal treated back teeth do need a crown on the other hand.

The internal whitening is for teeth that have been traumatized. Often blood from trauma can enter the tooth and cause discoloration in which only internal whitening can correct. If the tooth will recieve a crown, correction of color may not be necessary because the tooth in question will be covered by a crown.

Ryan Sellinger, DMD
Manhattan Dentist

A fiber post and a veneer in the answer!

With lower anterior teeth the way to treat them in this situation (after root canal) is to clean the inside of the tooth, place a fiber post and do a porcelain veneer that is designed like a 3/4 crown.

This is the most conservative and esthetic approach.

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.