Root Canal Therapy
With the knowledge and expertise endodontists possess, teeth once doomed to be extracted now can be salvaged with root canal therapy. Our endodontists use the latest microscopic techniques and most up-to-date methods to treat pulp and periapical disease. When the space inside the tooth containing the nerve and blood vessels, or the ‘pulp.’ becomes infected or inflamed it commonly exhibits one or more of the following:
- Spontaneous pain or throbbing while biting.
- Sensitivity to hot and cold foods.
- Swelling and tenderness in the nearby gums.
- Discoloration of the tooth.
- Sometimes though there are no symptoms.
The inflammation or infection can have a variety of causes: deep decay, repeated dental procedures on a tooth, trauma, or a crack or chip in a tooth. The tooth nerve will not heal by itself. If left untreated, the infection will spread to the bone around the tooth causing bone destruction. The pain can worsen until emergency treatment or extraction is necessary.
Root Canal Therapy Procedure
- First, you will be given a local anesthetic to completely numb the area and provide you maximum comfort during the entire appointment. A rubber sheet will be placed around the tooth to isolate it.
- The endodontist makes an opening in the crown of the tooth and removes the infected nerve tissue. They use very small instruments and a special powerful microscope to completely clean the pulp out and reshape the root canals to prepare them for special root canal filling materials.
- The final step in your root canal will be the sealing of the space with a sterile, plastic material, called gutta percha. This is done to prevent possible future infection.
- After the doctor completes their treatment you will need to return to your dentist to have a post and crown or other restoration placed on the tooth to protect and restore it to function.
More than 95% of root canal treatments are successful. The tooth receives blood and nutrients from the surrounding tissues and properly taken care of, with regular dental visits, can last a lifetime.
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