Question: I had problem with my Temporo-mandibular joint. Whenever I go to the dentist for the treatment my jaw gets locked and I have difficulty in closing it. Keeping the mouth open for a long time is very difficult. Root canal treatment of three teeth was done few years ago, but I did not go for fitting of the crown/cap of any of them? I want to know if it is necessary to have crown fitting after the root canal treatment. Why it is necessary to get it done? How many types of crown are available? Can crown be fitted in all the teeth in one sitting? Which one is the best one? Will I again have lock jaw problem during capping? Are the caps for front tooth and posterior tooth the same? Is there any way by which jaw problem can be taken care of?
Answer (by Dr. Chirag Semlani): Caps after root canal treatment are advisable as they reinforce the tooth. Root canal treatment relieves from pain and discomfort associated with the tooth, capping procedure replaces the loss tooth structure by decay and treatment procedure. There are various types of caps available in the market metal, porcelain fused to metal, full ceramic, zirconia crowns etc. Full ceramic crowns and zirconia crowns are supposedly recent technology and the best one available in market. Cap fittings can’t be done in one sitting as it has a proper protocol to follow. Generally two to three sittings are required for cap cementation. Caps for front teeth vary then posterior teeth, for front teeth important criteria is esthetics, while for the posterior the caps should be stronger to bear the masticatory forces (forces created during chewing). Temporo-mandibular joint is a hinge that connects the jaw to the temporal bone of the skull, which are in front of each ear. It lets you move your jaw up and down and side to side, so you can talk, chew, and yawn. Continuous opening of the jaw will create stresses in the jaw musculature. Consult your dentist or temporo-mandibular joint specialist for the problem.