When referring to endodontic treatment, we usually mean root canals. Root canal therapy is necessary when one or more teeth sustain an infection to the sensitive inner pulp and the infection spreads to the root of the tooth. Root canals get their bad reputation because the patient is often in a lot of pain leading up to the procedure. Although the treatment itself is similar to getting a filling, the root contains a large number of nerve endings, so when they’re infected you will know. At North Hills Family Dental, we are able to quickly diagnose and treat your infected tooth, offering comfort, easing the pain, and improving your overall oral health.
The first step to treating a root canal is to remove the infected pulp inside the tooth. If it remains inside the tooth, the infection will continue to spread and can lead to severe bone deterioration in serious cases. Since the pulp can be very sensitive, we offer local anesthetic to our patients undergoing this procedure. Once the tooth or teeth have been thoroughly cleaned and disinfected, Dr. Mauro will fill the tooth with gutta-percha to maintain the integrity of the tooth and prevent further infection. Depending on the severity of the damaged tooth, you may need a second appointment to have a permanent crown placed.
What Causes Tooth Infections?
There are two primary ways that a tooth can become infected. Untreated tooth decay is, by far, the most common cause of an infected tooth. As a cavity becomes worse and worse and weakens your enamel, oral bacteria can contact the soft nerve and blood-vessel filled “pulp” that provides support for your tooth, causing a painful infection.
More rarely, a serious crack or chip in your tooth can breach the enamel and dentin of your tooth, exposing the pulp and allowing the tooth to become infected. Regardless of the cause of your infection, the end result is the same. You may experience symptoms like a toothache, increased sensitivity around your tooth, swelling and discoloration, and even a fever, in serious cases.
The Importance of Root Canals
The sooner you get treatment for your infected tooth, the better the chance is that it can be saved. If your tooth is too severely infected, Dr. Mauro may not be able to save it with a root canal, and it may need to be extracted and replaced with an implant, bridge, or partial denture.
A root canal is the best way to get relief from the pain and discomfort of a toothache, which is a common symptom of an infected tooth. Once you get treatment at North Hills Family Dental, you can get back to your normal, day-to-day life.
Numbing And Sedation Options
With today’s modern tools and methods, root canals are a virtually painless procedure. However, we know that any oral surgery can be intimidating, so we offer advanced numbing agents and sedation dentistry to keep you comfortable. Before your procedure begins, we will use a powerful numbing agent like novocaine to numb the affected area and ensure that you experience no pain or discomfort while undergoing treatment. We also offer sedation dentistry, such as laughing gas, which is ideal if you would like to feel more safe and comfortable throughout your procedure but do not want to be heavily sedated.
If you think you might need endodontic treatment, please contact North Hills Family Dental today. The sooner we see you, the more likely we’ll be able to save your natural tooth. If you have any questions about root canal therapy, don’t hesitate to ask. We’re happy to alleviate any concerns and encourage our patients to call.
Whether it’s your first time, or you know us all by name, we work hard to ensure everyone who comes to North Hill Family Dentistry is cared for quickly, thoroughly, and with compassion. Drop us a line and we'll get back to you as soon as possible.