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The short answer is yes. Though a crown can provide protection against bacterial invasion and decay, sometimes bacteria can still find its way underneath the crown and cause an infection of the underlying tooth. If you have a persistent pain or swelling around your crowned tooth, it may be indicative of an infection that needs to be addressed by your dentist. Your dentist will likely take x-rays to determine the exact cause and may need to remove the crown in order to treat the infection. It is important that any signs of infection are treated as soon as possible in order to prevent further damage from occurring. Keeping up with good oral hygiene habits such as daily brushing and flossing is also essential for maintaining healthy teeth, even when you have a crown in place.

What are the causes of inflammation under the dental crown?

A dental crown is a completely enclosed dental prosthesis that fits neatly on top of the tooth (and also encloses it exactly)


So how can inflammation occur inside a closed metal object, of all things?

One possible cause of inflammation under the dental crown is a lack of cleaning of the affected area by the dentist (when inserting the crown).

If there are still bacteria or caries residues on the tooth, these are preserved under the crown, so to speak. There the inflammation can then spread and develop wonderfully.

Reason number 1 is lack of oral hygiene

The most common cause of inflammation under the tooth crown, however, has nothing to do with mistakes made by the dentist.

No matter how good your dentist is, when a crown is placed, there will always be a tiny open incision between the gum and the crown, simply because it is technically impossible to do otherwise. This is only a few micrometers small – but for bacteria or caries this is no obstacle.

tooth crown treatment

Much more common than medical error is poor hygiene after the procedure.

The risk is especially high if you don’t take proper care of your teeth. Once too many caries bacteria thrive in your mouth, some of them are bound to get under the crown as well.

That’s why thorough oral hygiene is (almost) even more important with dentures than without. In such a case, electric appliances are recommended to help you with the correct brushing technique.

Tip: Here’s all the info on the most effective aid for healthy teeth: electric toothbrushes in test.

How do I recognize such an inflammation, what are the symptoms?

Inflammation under the tooth crown makes itself quite quickly and clearly noticeable. The following symptoms may occur:

In addition, pus blisters in the mouth can be signs of a bacterial infection.

What are the consequences if I delay treatment?

As with all ailments in the mouth, the same applies here: The longer the inflammation is left untreated, the worse it will get.

tooth crown inflammation pain

In fact, an untreated infection keeps spreading and attacking new areas as well. In the case of the tooth crown, this means that the bacteria will next attack the root of the tooth and infect it as well (tooth root inflammation).

  • Then you may also be in for a painful root canal treatment. In some cases, your doctor may not be able to save it either and will have to pull the tooth.
  • Once the infection begins to spread over a large area (and you do not take medical help) threatens in extreme cases sepsis (blood poisoning).

This is clearly a drastic and unlikely case, but should not go unmentioned because of the possible fatal danger.

What can I do about it?

Can you do anything about it yourself once your dental crown is infected? The answer is a very clear no.

Without the proper dental equipment and expertise, your only option is preventive care (preferably flossing, sonic toothbrushing & mouth rinsing).

tooth crown inflammation medication

Once the bacteria have taken root, then often only antibiotics & other remedies will help.

To avoid potentially serious consequences and long-term damage, you should therefore definitely consult a doctor in the event of an infection under the dental crown.

When should I see a doctor and what happens there?

If the inflammation is detected and treated in time, such an infection is usually not the end of the world (and can be treated well and without complications).

The exact course of treatment depends on the type of your dental crown.

Conventional dental crowns

If the crown is only placed on a single tooth, the dentist will first attempt to loosen it.

If this succeeds, he removes all inflamed tissue. He then cleans the tooth and surrounding areas completely, and then puts the crown back on.

tooth crown pain dentist

Tip: Ask specific questions before treatment to learn more about the procedure.

Other dentures

With dental bridges or implants, the procedure is usually more difficult. This is because the neighboring teeth are often affected as well, so the effort (and cost) increases.

In addition to the immediate removal of the inflamed areas by the dentist, he usually administers antibiotics. These ensure that the infection permanently stops & not flare up again.

How can I effectively prevent?

Now for the good news: You can wonderfully prevent an inflammation under the tooth crown yourself. And you can do so simply by practicing proper oral hygiene.

If you have an artificial crown, you should brush your teeth plus tongue (with a tongue cleaner) at least 2 times a day. Optimally, you should brush after every meal.

electric toothbrushes for dental crowns

In addition, you should use dental floss, interdental brushes or an oral irrigator. After all, even the best toothbrush often fails to reach the very areas that are particularly prone to inflammation.

Despite this, a good toothbrush is probably the greatest help for a radiant smile. Top-of-the-line devices like the Philips Sonicare DiamondClean offer everything important for healthy teeth.

However, you are welcome to read more about other models: Electric toothbrushes in comparison.


So, in summary, inflammation under the crown of your teeth is not too serious a medical emergency, and you can usually treat it well.

But if you suspect an infection, be sure to see a doctor in time to prevent secondary damage or a worse development.

Prevent you can with a comprehensive oral hygiene. Then it comes not at all to toothache & expensive treatments at the doctor.