When properly cared for, your teeth should last your whole life. Unfortunately, this is often not the case. Things can happen that can cause teeth to become damaged, which can lead to infection and the need for restorative dental treatments.
If you have a damaged tooth, the team at Avery Dental Center will strive to save the structure of the tooth when possible. This is often done with root canal therapy. In this article, we’ll explain more about root canal therapy, how you know you need it, and how it works.
There are several signs that you may need root canal treatment, including:
Tooth pain may be an indication that your tooth pulp is infected. You may have pain from time to time or it may bother you all the time. The pain may be in the tooth and the jawbone where the tooth is located or may be referred to other areas of your mouth. Tooth pain may not always be due to infected pulp- there are other causes for toothache. However, early diagnosis and treatment are critical to ensure the best outcome.
An abscess is a pimple- or boil-like spot on the gum near the affected tooth. This is a tell-tale sign that you have an infection that must be treated promptly. If left untreated, the infection may spread to other areas of your body such as your heart or brain. If it spreads to these areas, it could be life-threatening.
Acidic waste products from the dead pulp can cause the gums around the affected tooth to swell. Swelling may be persistent or may come and go. Some patients have no pain at all with the swelling, while others experience pain when the gum is touched.
If your tooth is sensitive to hot/cold foods and beverages or sensitive to touch, it is an indication that the nerves and blood vessels are infected or damaged. The sensitivity may be dull or sharp and often comes and goes. You may only experience pain when touching the area around the affected tooth or when eating/drinking or it may linger even after the touch stimulus is over.
A cracked tooth opens up the inside area of the tooth for bacteria to get in. If caught early, a crack can be repaired, and root canal treatment may not be necessary. However, if left untreated, bacteria can get into the tooth pulp and cause the above issues, which indicates that root canal treatment may be your best option.
There are five steps involved in root canal treatment, which usually take place over one or two dental visits.
The first step is to prepare the treatment area. This involves administering local anesthesia and placing a dental dam to protect the rest of your mouth as well as the affected tooth.
Next, the dentist will drill a small hole in the tooth to allow the pulp to be removed. If you have any abscesses, those will be removed at this time.
Once all of the pulp has been removed, the dentist will thoroughly clean and disinfect the tooth.
The dentist will take the time to shape each tooth root to ensure that all of the dead pulp has been removed and the fill material can get into them.
The final step in the process is to fill the tooth with a biocompatible material that will support the structure of the tooth from the inside.
At this time, the dentist will seal the tooth with a dental filling. If you need a dental crown, impressions will be taken, and the crown will be ordered. You will need to return for another appointment to have the crown placed.
Root canal treatment offers many benefits, including:
Root canal therapy ranges from around $700 to $2,100 for the procedure itself, depending on the location of the tooth. A front tooth costs less than a molar because it is easier to access. Since this is a restorative dental procedure, most dental insurance providers will cover a portion of the treatment.
If you have a persisting toothache, an abscess, swelling around your teeth, extreme sensitivity, or a cracked tooth, schedule your consultation with the root canal experts in Dublin. The team at Avery Dental Center will perform a comprehensive exam to determine which tooth is causing the problems and determine the best course of treatment.
When possible, we will do root canal therapy to save the structure of the tooth. If this is not possible, extraction may be required. At this time, we can explain our options for tooth replacement.