A false stump is a custom-made metal prosthetic device, which enables us to rebuild the visible part of your tooth so that it can support a crown, either alone or as part of a bridge.
If your teeth are in very poor condition, with important decay requiring a great deal of reconstruction, or if they are fractured, we may sometimes find that it is impossible to fit a crown to the small area of remaining tooth. Sometimes a fractured tooth will be a tooth from which the nerve has been removed, meaning that only the roots are left.
To consolidate the tooth we make a false stump. This is a metal piece anchored inside one or several roots of the tooth, the protruding part of which will act as a pillar to take the crown.
We will make a false stump with a crown if the tooth has had its nerve removed or if we have the possibility of carrying out good endodontic treatment or a root canal. In addition, the root or roots on which the work is to be carried out must be strong, with no periodontal problems, i.e. without inflamed gums and with absolutely no movement or pain when touched.
An X-ray is required to rule out a fracture or root infection. If the roots are very curved, they may represent a problem for correctly proceeding with endodontic treatment; it could also mean that the pillar of the false stump is so short that we wouldn’t have enough space to anchor it properly.
The false stump is used:
- Whenever a filling or reconstruction is insufficient in itself, due to being of a size that entails a high risk that it will fall out.
- To provide supportfor a crown, without which the false stump would lack strength and could split.
- To strengthen a toothwhich will be used to hold a bridge in place.
- In the event of malocclusion or of a poor relationship between the upper and the lower teeth, where the force is poorly distributed when chewing, causing stress on the tooth to receive a crown or tooth. The false stump will reinforce this kind of tooth.
- In the event of poorly positioned teeth, to change the angle or shape of a tooth by fitting a crown and guaranteeing that it is properly held in place.
Takes four appointments:
- At the first appointment we will carry out a root canal; in other words, we will remove the root from the place to receive the false stump and its crown. This appointment won’t be necessary if a root canal has already been carried out on the tooth.
- During the second appointment, we will remove part of the filling inserted during the root canal and prepare the root channel to take the false stump. We will then take a silicone impression of the inside part of the root and send it to the laboratory, where they will make the false stump.
- At the third appointment, having checked that it fits properly, we will cement the false stump in place and make a mould of it, of the tooth sitting on it, of the surrounding gum and teeth, and of the corresponding teeth on the upper or lower jaw for the purposes of making the crown or bridge.
- Lastly, at the fourth appointment, we will cement the crown in place, either on its own or as part of a bridge.
For more information, you can read the articles on crowns and bridges in this chapter on dentures or dental prostheses.