Dental crowns protect and restore damaged teeth. When placing your dental crown, the doctors of Boston Prosthodontics Dental Group will take care to minimize your risk of side effects. Since placing a dental crown requires the removal of natural tooth structure, some of our Boston, MA, patients experience heightened sensitivity in the days following placement of the dental crown.
Most patients report minimal discomfort related to this temporary side effect. If discomfort increases over time, or if you experience the sudden onset of pain coming from your restoration, you should let one of our doctors know immediately.
Causes of Sensitivity
Preparing a tooth for a crown requires the removal of natural tooth structure. Enamel typically insulates the more sensitive dentin beneath from pressure and temperature fluctuations. Following the removal of enamel, the nerves within the tooth may become more sensitive as your mouth adjusts to the changes and new restoration.
Following your dental crown placement, sensitivity may be related to:
- Temperature sensitivity: Some patients may experience heightened temperature sensitivity, especially with particularly hot and cold food and drinks.
- Pressure: It can be helpful to avoid hard or crunchy foods in the days after treatment, as the tooth may be more sensitive to pressure.
- Interference with the bite: If the crown does not match the size and shape of your original tooth, the restoration may interfere with your bite. This can be particularly noticeable when the mouth is closed and the teeth are interlocked.
- Decay or infection: Discomfort may be caused by a bacterial infection inside the crown. Left untreated, this type of infection could lead to a root canal infection and the need for emergency treatment.
- Allergies: If your crown contains metal, some people may experience an allergic reaction.
- A poor-fitting crown: If the crown does not have a strong and even bond with the surface of the tooth, you may feel that your bite is “off.”
How Long Will My Dental Crown Sensitivity Last?
Not every patient experiences tooth sensitivity following treatment. If you do experience sensitivity, it could be due to certain foods, pressure, or air. Sensitivity will naturally subside within the first days or weeks after treatment for most patients. The body has a natural way of adjusting to the new sensations.
Tips for Reducing Sensitivity
Simple steps can help you avoid aggravating your dental crown while your mouth adjusts to the restoration. Sensitivity to temperature changes is one of the more common side effects that you may experience.
Taking a break from ice cream and hot drinks is your best bet for avoiding unwanted sensitivity while your mouth adjusts. Drinking cold liquids through a straw may also help. If pressure is the cause of your sensitivity, avoiding hard foods for a few days will help.
If the position or size of your crown is the culprit, one of our doctors can make minor adjustments to improve your occlusion.
Schedule Your Dental Crown Consultation Today
Sensitivity after dental crown placement is normal and not a cause for concern. If your sensitivity does not resolve after a few weeks, let one of our doctors know. Your crown may need to be adjusted. If you experience oral pain near your crown, that could be a sign that your tooth is infected.
Our dental team is here to address any of your questions or concerns following the placement of your dental crown. To schedule your dental crown consultation, please contact our office online or call (617) 582-2481.