Dentistry: Post and Core

When it comes to our teeth we can never be too careful, which is exactly why it’s so crucial to ensure that if we have professional work done that it is long-lasting and effective. Let’s say you needed to have a new crown fitted following a root canal procedure – the last thing you need is to have that brand new crown fall off whilst you are chowing down on a cheeseburger – it probably won’t add to the taste!

So, what can be done to ensure a solid foundation for a new crown? Simple – a post and core.

What is a Post and Core?

A post and core is a relatively straightforward dental treatment which aims to solidify a tooth so that it can serve as a hard wearing foundation for a crown. A post and core is generally fitted after a patient has had a root canal operation. A root canal involves the removal of the nerve from the inside of a tooth, leaving a hollow space in its centre. This hole is usually filled with a special material to strengthen the tooth; however when a post and core is fitted the dentist will generally remove at least part of this material. This allows for the post to be fitted within the tooth.

The post is a crafted from either metal or a strengthened plastic fiber, and is secured within the centre of the tooth with cement. Once this has been done, part of the post will be exposed above the tooth – this is where a core is created.

A core is built from the same substance used within the tooth following the root canal, and is shaped in such a way that it will provide support for and be an anchor to the new crown.

A post and core is a doubly secure method of affixing a crown to a tooth, with a deep foundation which is truly anchored to the existing teeth. It offers longevity for the crown, and long term confidence for the patient.

Who Can Benefit from a Post and Core Treatment?

Anyone who is need of a crown for a tooth which may not be strong enough to keep it anchored would benefit greatly from a post and core. More specifically, those patients who have had a root canal carried out in the past. If someone that has not had a root canal is in need of a crown, there are plenty of other options open to them which will anchor the crown just as well as a post and core.

Because of the prerequisite of having had a root canal, post and core treatments are a fairly rare occurrence; however when a person has a destroyed tooth and requires a tooth canal, a post and core can mean the difference between a winning smile and a toothless grin.

What Benefits Does a Post and Core Offer?

Primarily, the post and core treatment is a sure fire way to keep a crown anchored to a tooth which has had a root canal. The post and core treatment offers a solid foundation which will hold the new crown in place for a great many years. Obviously, the crown will still be vulnerable to external damage; however it should not ever simply ‘fall out’ or become loose. The sturdy construction of a post and core offers those that have the procedure the confidence to know they are receiving a long term solution to their dental issue.

What are the Risks Involved with a Post and Core Treatment?

Realistically, the risks involved are no different to many other dental procedures. There is always a chance of infection or complications arising; however due to the fact that this operation focuses mainly on a ‘dead’ tooth, these occurrences are very rare.

In fact, the largest risk is probably the possibility that the patient may not like the look of their new crown!

Post and Core: A Recommended Treatment?

The bottom line here is that if a person is suffering the embarrassment of a missing tooth, or they simply want to replace an old tooth which has had its root removed, a post and core is the single best way to achieve that. It carries with it very little risk of anything going wrong, and offers the patient a long-lasting and secure solution to their problem.

Another benefit is that the patient’s self confidence will normally receive a huge boost once they have replaced a missing or damaged tooth with a new crown. This is the kind of benefit that only dentistry (and maybe cosmetic surgery) can offer – and for many patients, it’s worth its weight in gold.

The information in the article is not intended to substitute for the medical expertise and advice of your health care provider. We encourage you to discuss any decisions about treatment or care with an appropriate health care provider.