Here's my experience as I assisted the dentist during a crown appt.
Since you've had a root canal the tooth won't have to be have anesthetic. But, the gumline around the tooth will need a little bit.
The dentist will take an impression of the tooth so that he can make a temporary for you to wear while you wait for the permanent crown.
Then he/she will begin to "shave" the tooth. The tooth will be taken down to look like a peg shape, thicker at the gumline and then becoming more narrow, so that it fits in the permanent crown.
Then you're ready for the impression. The dentist may fit a thin cord under the gumline around the tooth before the impression is taken. (He'll remove the cord before taking the impression) The reason for this is so that the impression material will go under the gumline a bit, since he wants the permanent crown to be made to fit under the gumline just a bit. This will hide the top of the crown under the gumline and it will help so that food doesn't get caught and cause any gum problems.
After the impression comes out the way it should, the temporary will be placed, the bite will be checked and you will be dismissed. You will return in a couple of weeks for the insertion of your permanent crown.
If I forgot anything, I'll add it later.
Let me know if there are any other questions....and have fun!
question in regards to shaving off the sides of the tooth.. since my root canal happened on the side of my molar (the side touching my cheek) does that mean my filling will be shaved down also? and how many visits did it require?
Probably it will. But since there is no nerve in the tooth you wont feel it. All that is left is a little post in the middle of the tooth (could be tooth, could be part of the filling) and the crown then gets cemented to that post. Shaving it down is nothing more that the dentist using a grinding bit on the drill. It doesnt hurt.
Two visits for the crown.
And, yes your filling will be "shaved" down also.
The crown will be cemented to the peg shaped tooth. The appointment is a noisy one, since a drill is needed to shave the tooth down. But it won't hurt. Your mouth has to open for quite a while, so that may be irritating.
After the root canal, did your dentist put a post in the center of the tooth? If he hasn't yet, he may have to do that before the crown appt.
I just went for my initial step on getting a crown back on Weds., January 14 after getting a root canal the previous week. The only thing I can add is that the dentist injected anesthetic on either side of my gum (front and back) and waited about 3-5 minutes for it to take effect. It didn't wear off until about 2 hours later. I was told I couldn't eat for a few hours afterward (around the time the anesthetic wore off) and ONLY to eat soft foods; preferably on the other side of my mouth. The process itself took barely a hour.
I was told hard and crunchy foods should be avoided and if my temporary crown cracks to save the pieces of it and call his office immediately, paging him if necessary.
The drilling sound was a bit unnerving; and although I felt it slightly, I certainly didn't feel any pain. Good luck on yours, I get my permanent crown on Weds., January 28.