Gum Infection Around Dental Crown: How To Treat and Avoid It

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Statistics estimate that 47 percent of U.S. adults 30 or older have some form of gum disease. Gum issues can also affect artificial teeth.

Gum Infection Around Dental Crown

If you recently had a dental crown placement done for your problematic tooth, you may be practicing proper oral hygiene measures to preserve its quality and dental health. 

However, sometimes you may get a gum infection around your dental crown that can cause the restoration to fail

If you have symptoms of a dental crown infection, this article will serve as a guide to educate you on the proper steps you need to take to reverse it.

Understanding Dental Crowns and Bridges

Dental crowns are types of dental restorations that fit over your damaged or decayed tooth like a cap. They serve as protection to restore the function and appearance of the tooth and can be made from a variety of materials, including resin, porcelain, or metal.

Crowns are custom-made to fit over your tooth, which means that they can be altered in size and shape to give a seamless appearance in your mouth. Most dentists recommend crowns for patients with irreparable tooth structures.

Dental bridges are simply a series of connected crowns used to restore multiple teeth. Two crowns are anchored to either side of the missing tooth gap between which is fitted the bridge. They are also custom-made and color-matched with the other existing natural teeth.

This device restores form, function, and aesthetics in patients missing more than two teeth. Not only that but the dental bridge is designed so that it can restore a balanced bite to the patients.

What Causes Gum Infection Around A Crown?

While crowns and bridges are an excellent method of restoring damaged or missing teeth, there is a risk of developing infection of the gums around the crown.

Gum Disease

Some of the various causes of crown-induced infections in the gums are:

  • Bulky crown shape: If the crown has been fabricated to be excessively bulky, it can cause chronic irritation and inflammation to the gums. The lopsided shape of the structure can foster bacteria and plaque around the edges of the crown. This ultimately can lead to infection of the gums.
  • Improper crown: The space between two teeth is called the interproximal contact. When there is minimal to no contact between the crown and the adjacent teeth, it can trap food underneath a crown. This causes the gums to swell.
  • Broken crown: If your crown has fractured, that can also lead to possible infection down the line. 
  • Loose crown: If the shape of the crown is ill-fitting when the crown is placed, or if you have a loose or damaged crown after many years of use, food can get trapped within the crevices. This can, again, cause gum-related issues.

Some of the tooth-related causes of infections in the gums around a crown are:

  • Damaged tooth structure: If the tooth underneath the crown has been fractured beyond the outer layer of the tooth (enamel), it can cause the gums around the tooth to become inflamed.
  • Trauma to the crown: If there has been some trauma or damage to the crown that has caused the underlying tooth to also be affected, it can cause gum-related issues as well.
  • Tooth decay: The tooth can rot underneath the crown. In cases where the crown has cracked, trapped food debris can cause the underlying tooth to decay and cause abscesses to form on the gums.

Signs And Symptoms Of Gum Infection 

If you look close enough, you may be able to catch onto some early signs of gum disease under an unassuming crown. 

Some common signs and symptoms include redness and inflammation of the gums near the crown.


Gums may bleed when brushing or flossing or without any stimulus at all. Foul taste and bad breath are indicative signs of bacterial activity and budding infection.

Some patients might experience tenderness when they bite down on food. This can also be accompanied by heightened sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures.

While it is normal for you to feel some gum pain after a tooth crown is placed, it is not normal for you to feel persistent pain or discomfort that does not go away with pain medications.

Preventing Gum Infection Around Crown

While dental crowns can present certain gum-related complications, you can prevent gum disease with personal and professional dental care. 

Here are some key ways you can prevent a crown from getting infected and cut off the spread of infection to other parts of the mouth and body:

Proper Oral Hygiene Practices

Effective dental hygiene is a critical element in preventing gum-related diseases and infections. This should begin at home. Regular brushing and flossing at least twice daily can help get rid of stray debris. Gargling with antiseptic mouthwash can lessen oral bacteria.

Pay close attention to the gums around your dental crown when performing your dental hygiene regimen.

Regular Dental Checkups 

Routine dental visits are crucial in minimizing your risk of gum-related complications as well as detecting issues early, like loose crowns or decay under the crowns. With regular dental examinations, you can secure the safety and longevity of your crown.

Regular Dental Cleanings

Plaque and tartar accumulation can be difficult to remove by brushing and flossing alone. With deep professional cleanings at your dentist’s office, you can prevent major gum problems from arising in the future.

Cleaning Teeth

Lifestyle Changes to Support Oral Health

A well-balanced and mineral-rich diet can be fundamental in supporting strong teeth and healthy gums. Be sure to avoid excessive sugar to prevent tooth decay. Hard and sticky foods should be avoided as they may damage the dental crowns.

Smoking can cause many oral health problems such as gum-related diseases. Consider quitting to keep your crowns on for longer.

Treatment Options for Dental Crown Infection

There are several appropriate treatment options available to treat gum-infected crowns. Some of these treatments include:

Nonsurgical Treatments

For repeated infections, your dentist may recommend root canal therapy which involves removing the infected pulp. Then the canals are disinfected and sealed to prevent reinfection. 

Preserving the crown is crucial in ensuring the success of your dental crown. Therefore, crown replacement may be needed in cases where the crown is fractured, loosened, or ill-fitting.


Your dentist may prescribe antibiotics as an initial step to deal with dental crown infections. They can eliminate bacteria and reduce inflammation while also alleviating symptoms. Complete the full course of treatment with antibiotics as directed by your dentist.

Scaling and Root Planing

Deep cleaning the gums and root surfaces of the teeth, respectively known as scaling and root planing can be an essential step in ensuring the progression of gum problems.

Contact your dental professional to get more information about it.

Surgical Treatments

Gum Grafting

In cases where the gums have receded to expose the underlying roots of the tooth, your dentist may recommend a gum grafting surgery. In this procedure, a small piece of new tissue is placed on the gums to protect the roots.

Pocket Reduction Surgery

A sign of advanced gum disease is the formation of flaps in between the tooth and gums where food and bacteria lodgement can occur. This is known as a periodontal pocket. Surgery to reduce this pocket depth can prevent further damage and infection to the gums.


If your crowns are ill-fitted or if your infected tooth is causing pain, you’re at risk of developing an infection. Gum infection around crown treatment can significantly reduce the success of your crown.

If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms that may indicate an infection, you should seek professional dental assistance. Upon examination, your dentist can tell if your crown is damaged and will then formulate a treatment plan that best suits your needs.


Are there some other signs to know that your crown is infected?

A tell-tale sign of an infection is the formation of an abscess in the area around the crown. An abscess is a pus-filled lesion that forms at the tooth’s root. You may also experience fever, swelling on the face or cheek, and continuous throbbing pain.

Why do you need immediate treatment for infection around crown treatment?

If left untreated, gum disease under a dental crown can have serious consequences, affecting your surrounding connective tissues and even your bone. Studies also suggest that gum issues may cause systemic problems, so you should seek prompt dental care.

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