Root Canal therapy is typically performed when a tooth's pulp chamber has been infected, irritated or inflamed. The procedure involves cleaning out the contents of the pulp chamber, applying medication to the area to dry out any infection and sealing the tooth with a special type of filling material called gutta-percha.Root canals have earned a…
Three Questions to Ask Your Dentist About Root Canals
Root canal therapy has a bad reputation as one of the dental treatments you should be scared of, but that could not be further from the truth. The procedure is typically performed to treat severe damage to a tooth or an infection, which are dental issues that are known to cause severe toothaches.
Root canal therapy is meant to bring an end to pain caused by a damaged tooth, not cause patients more pain. The treatment takes about 45 minutes for each tooth, and it is completed during a single visit. Teeth that have been treated with root canals are often covered with crowns to prevent further damage.
Questions you should ask your dentist about root canal therapy
Think you might need to get a root canal? Let us go over some of the questions you might have:
1. What goes on during a root canal?
A dentist might recommend restoring a tooth with root canal therapy if its pulp chamber has been compromised. The pulp chamber is the part of a tooth that houses its nerve and blood vessels. It is the deepest layer of a tooth, and it is sealed off from the rest of the tooth to protect its contents from bacteria and acids in the mouth.
Severe damage or decay can end up opening this area up, increasing the chances of infection. Root canals are performed to prevent and treat infections by removing the contents of the pulp chamber. The treatment typically starts with the dentist using a local anesthetic to numb the area being worked on. This prevents the patient from feeling pain as the dentist works.
Once the tooth being worked on has been numbed, the dentist will make a hole that reaches its pulp chamber with a dental drill. Files are then used to remove the soft tissues in the area, and medication might be applied. A special dental material called gutta-percha is then used to seal the tooth. Depending on the location of the restored tooth, a crown might be placed over it, or composite bonding might be used to rebuild it.
2. What is recovery like after a root canal?
There is no recovery after getting a root canal. Most patients do not experience noticeable pain or discomfort afterward, and they are free to return to their daily activities. The pain that brought the patient to the clinic should be gone at that point.
3. What happens if I keep postponing getting a root canal?
Failing to address a compromised pulp chamber can lead to an infection that can spread to other parts of the body like the brain and have life-threatening consequences. An infection that has been allowed to get out of control might force the dentist to extract the tooth to prevent it from spreading.
Restore your tooth with endodontic therapy
Call or visit our Madison clinic to learn more about how root canals can be used to restore severely damaged teeth.
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