If you are experiencing persistent tooth pain and sensitivity whenever you try to chew or when you drink a hot or cold beverage, it may be time to see general dentists at Discover Dental. It could be that you are suffering from a root canal dental problem that may require urgent surgical treatment. This post sheds more light on that surgical procedure known in layman’s terms as root canal treatment and how we can help provide top-notch root canal procedures to help resolve your dental concerns.
What Exactly Is Root Canal Treatment?
The term “root canal” refers to a component of a tooth and not an oral therapy. The majority of the crown of a tooth is typically above the gum line while the roots of the tooth is within the gums where it connects with the jawbone. In the root canal is the pulp which is basically a hollow portion of a tooth that is made up of blood vessels, nerve tissue, and other cellular structures. It is the pulp that provides a tooth with sufficient nourishment as well as adequate lubrication to all the surrounding tissues.
The hypersensitive nerve endings of the pulp is what gives off the pain sensation felt whenever a tooth experiences very hot and/or cold temperatures (like when you drink a cup of hot beverage or a glass of icy cold water). It is interesting to note that what is frequently referred to as root canal treatment is known in the dentistry community as “Endodontic therapy”. Loosely translated – endodontic therapy means a dental surgery done within the tooth itself.
Nevertheless, root canal is a term that seems to have stuck with everyone including dentists who would rather maintain the term when discussing with their patients than spend time trying to explain otherwise.
An Endodontist is a root canal specialist in dentistry who provides the expertise needed to eliminate substantial tooth infection within the pulp itself during Endodontic therapy. In effect, root canal therapy is a preferred dental procedure to the alternative dental solution of tooth extraction.
Steps Taken In Root Canals Procedure?
Root canal treatment involves three main steps which are completed over the course of between a single to multiple appointments – usually not more than three scheduled appointments.
Below are the common steps taken by a qualified dentist during a typical root canal procedure;
Thorough Cleaning of the Dental Pulp
The dentist begins by clearing out the root canal and this is usually done when the patient is under local anesthetic. The dentist starts by creating a small access hole on the surface of the problematic tooth. This is followed by the removal (with extremely fine files) of severely damaged and completed dead pulp tissue through the access hole created.
Filling out the Pulp Chamber
Using small files and conventional irrigation solutions, the dentist will shape out, clean, and completely decontaminate the hollow pulp chamber. The pulp chamber will then be filled with a rubbery substance before non-toxic adhesive cement is used to completely seal the root canal.
It is worth noting that after an endodontic treatment, the tooth involved is simply dead. As a result of the removal of the nerve tissue, blood vessels and other cellular structures in order to eliminate a root canal infection, the patient will no longer experience any sort of pain in the tooth operated on.
Applying a Dental crown or Filling
Even though the problem tooth is now dead following endodontic treatment, the tooth becomes more vulnerable than ever before. Without the presence of a pulp to provide the nourishment that the tooth requires, the tooth must obtain nutrition from the ligament that connects it to the jawbone. While the nutrition supplied by this ligament is often sufficient, it still doesn’t prevent the tooth from being progressively fragile over time. It therefore becomes pertinent to protect the brittle tooth with the use of a filling or an aesthetic crown.
It is important that as a patient at Discover Dental, you do not chew with the treated tooth until a crown has been installed. Once a crown has been placed, the tooth can then be put to normal use without any fear of damage.
However, note that if there are curved canals, several canals, or significant infections, then endodontic therapy may require an additional one or two scheduled consultation visits to the dentist office.
Is Root Canal Treatment on Natural Tooth Agonizing?
One of the greatest concerns about Endodontic therapy is that it would be very uncomfortable, but in the hands of a qualified dentist, root canal treatment should be a relatively painless surgical procedure.
The source of the pain is the infection within the natural tooth itself, not the treatment process. Ultimately, a root canal treatments are not designed to inflict further pain; but rather, the treatment is meant to provide sustained relieve from the incessant pain caused by infection.
Using a local anesthesia, the dentist will numb the tooth and its surrounding area to alleviate any discomfort during your scheduled visit for the treatment. This is done before the procedure needed to remove bacteria buildup is effectively carried out.
It is normal to experience post-treatment tenderness and discomfort after the removal of bacteria and the cleaning out of the pulp chamber. However, this discomfort and post-treatment tenderness is only temporary, and may be relieved with the use of over-the-counter (OTC) pain medication. Along with OTC pain medications, your dentist may also prescribe antibiotics to prevent recurring infection and the need for a repeat visit to the dental office to resolve the same problem with yet another root canal procedure.
Who needs A Root Canal Dentist Houston?
If the pulp becomes wounded or ill, it is unable of self-repair, and the tissue dies. This then leaves room for bacteria to build up in the pulp, especially where the tooth is broken or there is a deep set cavity present.
Eventually, the accumulation of germs will ruin the pulp of the infected tooth and where germs enter the jawbone through the root holes, they can lead to a more severe infection.
An infection will weaken and degrade the jawbone while inflammation of the surrounding ligaments can cause the infected tooth to become loose.
A pulp damage will make the tooth sensitive to extremes of heat and cold. Chewing may be painful, and some individuals have a constant, throbbing tooth pain leading to unimaginable discomfort.
In the absence of root canal treatments, the infection will inevitably spread causing the tooth to eventually fall loose and requiring extraction.
Some individuals choose extraction, especially if it is extremely painful or if the tooth cannot be saved, such as when there is extensive decay, damage, or bone loss due to periodontal disease.
Nevertheless, removing a tooth may cause the adjacent teeth to shift and become crooked. This might be ugly and make it difficult to take a proper bite.
Typically, root canal therapy will save the tooth and alleviate tooth pain. But where a tooth cannot be saved, then the best dental solution would be a dental implant which is as close to having natural teeth as you can get.
Nonetheless, if feasible, it is preferable to preserve the natural teeth because nothing operates as well as your natural tooth. So anyone experiencing tooth ache and pain as a result of an infection within the tooth itself will be a prime candidate for root canal treatment.
How much does A Root Canal Procedure Cost?
Costs for dental care vary greatly, however preserving a tooth with a root canal treatment is quite economical. The alternative to a root canal surgical procedure is extraction, and the cost of an implant or bridge to replace the extracted tooth is typically higher. Moreover, tooth extraction might result in malocclusion, crooked teeth, and chewing difficulties.
Are There Any Complications from a Root Canal Surgical Procedure?
Occasionally, the dentist discovers only three root canals in a tooth with four. If one canal is left untreated, the infection may extend to the bone and persist.
The dentist must also ensure that the filling substance enters the canal sufficiently to fill it. The infection could reoccur if the root canals are not fully sealed.
During the treatment, the tooth’s root may fracture, or the instruments may shatter or puncture the canal. This makes it difficult to effectively fill the troubled tooth.
If difficulties arise during root canal treatment, a specialist might attempt to resolve the issue and finish the root canal. Patients should always follow the dentist’s advice to avoid any possible complication. Whenever an antibiotic is prescribed, it is essential to complete the entire course of treatment.
The placement of a permanent restorative, such as a crown, is needed following root canal therapy to help protect the treated tooth from further damage.
How to Prevent Root Canal Infections
Dentists advise the following to prevent infections, tooth decay, and gum disease:
- Brushing teeth in the morning and before bedtime each day using fluoride-containing toothpaste, an appropriate toothbrush and replacing your toothbrush on a regular basis
- Attending regular dental examinations and cleanings
- Flossing to clean between the teeth and reduce plaque development
- Avoiding sugary beverages and meals, and maintaining a nutritious diet
- The use of dental sealants can also prevent decay
FAQs About Root Canal Dentist Houston
Why is root canal therapy necessary?
When the pulp within the inner portion of the tooth becomes infected, the pulp must be extracted. Infection and inflammation in the center of a tooth might be caused by decay that has extended throughout the tooth through a crack or chip, or as a result of repeated dental treatments performed on that tooth. If the infection is not treated, it can frequently cause pain and lead to the formation of an abscess.
Is root canal therapy painful?
A root canal procedure is no more painful than a regular filling. This procedure alleviates the excruciating pain caused by an infected tooth. The localized area will be anesthetized during the procedure, rendering you pain-free while the procedure is performed.
Does a root canal make my teeth weaker?
Removing the inner portion of a tooth impairs the tooth’s overall structure. Nonetheless, it can be strengthened with dental restorations like an inlay or dental crown. After the root canal treatment is completed, your dentist will administer an appropriate treatment to ensure the integrity of your tooth.
What should I anticipate following a root canal procedure?
When the anesthetic wears off, you will not experience the same extreme agony as before the root canal procedure. The removal of the inner nerves will provide you with pain relief. However, a majority of patients report the sensitivity of the treated area for a few days after the procedure as the surrounding tissues heal.
Discover Dental Center Home of the Best Root Canal Dentist Houston
At Discover Dental Center, we have the best root canal dentist and specialists in Houston, Texas. You can be certain that you will be in good hands whenever you make your way on a visit to our dental clinic. If you want to resolve your root canal infection problems, you can give us a call on – (713) 997-9390. Alternatively, you can book an appointment online now and we will meet you at your earliest convenience to provide dental solutions that would improve your oral health today.