For a lot of patients there are two words in dentistry more frightening than any others: root canal. It’s unfortunate that this essential procedure has become so feared – it’s an important part of keeping teeth healthy when severe infection occurs!
At Marineland Dental Care we don’t want our patients to fear root canals or any other dental treatment, and a lot of the fear can be eliminated by understanding what a root canal is, how it works, and why it’s such an important treatment.
Why Do People Get Root Canals?
Root canals are performed when tooth decay reaches the soft dental pulp at the root of a tooth. The dental pulp becomes infected really quick, which is the reason for the vast majority of toothaches. Eliminating the pain of infected dental pulp is one of the largest reasons for performing a root canal, but we also do it to prevent the spread of infection.
Left untreated, an infected root can lead to a dental abscess. These severe infections are located in your gums or the bone surrounding the tooth and seriously endanger your oral health. If an abscess spreads the result can be tooth, bone, and soft tissue loss. Not a pleasant possibility!
What Is A Root Canal?
A root canal involves complete removal of the dental pulp at the center of your tooth. We do this to eliminate the source of the infection and to preserve your tooth – it’s always our goal to keep your natural teeth in place whenever possible!
If you’re worried about the potential pain associated with a root canal don’t be! You’ll be numbed up with anesthesia before we even begin the procedure – you won’t feel a thing. If you’re nervous about the procedure and don’t think you can deal with the fear and anxiety you might be feeling we can also offer sedation to help ease your mind during your root canal.
The root canal itself starts with elimination of the cavity that’s running from the surface of your tooth to the root. We do this just like we would prepare your tooth for a filling, by removing all the infected material. We may also use tools to widen the path to your tooth’s root so that we can have easy access to it.
Once we’ve cleared out infected portions of your tooth and reached the root we’ll use specially designed tools to remove the infected dental pulp. By carefully measuring the depth of your root we can perform the procedure perfectly, removing only infected material and not hurting sensitive tissue under your tooth.
Once we’ve cleaned out and sterilized your tooth we’ll fill it with a soft rubber called gutta-percha. We don’t want to fill your root with hard dental composite or amalgam because your tooth needs to be able to give just a little bit. Gutta percha is an ideal filling material because it’s similar in consistency to your dental pulp.
A root canal is completed with a crown that protects the remaining healthy portion of your tooth from further infection and harm. It will take a couple of weeks to manufacture your crown, during which time you’ll wear a temporary.
The vast majority of patients getting root canals at our Kennewick dentist office report feeling better as soon as the anesthesia wears off. The pain associated with root canals primarily comes from the association of the infected root with the procedure itself. Our goal in performing a root canal is to eliminate cavity, infection, and pain while protecting your tooth. You’ll be thrilled to live pain-free again!
Preventing Root Canals
The best way to prevent your need for a root canal os to brush twice a day and always floss in the evening. Tooth decay and infection is caused by oral bacteria that everyone has, making preventive care an essential part of staying healthy.
If you’re experience a toothache or are worried about dental infection don’t wait – you can reach Marineland Dental Care with a quick call to 509-591-0515 – we want to help you feel better fast!
For non-emergency dental care needs you can also request an appointment by filling out our online form. We look forward to seeing you soon at Marineland Dental Care!