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  • Dental Sealants for Adults and Kids

    What is a dental sealant?

    A dental sealant is a coating of thin resin that is applied directly on the chewing surfaces of healthy, cavity-free back teeth, where decay occurs...

Root Canals

Root canal treatment or endodontic therapy is one of the most common dental procedures performed every year. This simple procedure can save your natural tooth from being extracted. Also, may prevent the need for replacement via an implant or bridgework.

Root canal treatment is needed for two main reasons. The first is infection. An untreated cavity is usually the most common cause of an infection. The decay eats away the enamel and dentin of the tooth until it reaches the inside of the tooth, the root canal. This allows bacteria to infect the pulp. Antibiotics may be given but will only temporarily take care of the problem. The inflammation caused by the infection reduces the blood supply to the tooth. The reduced blood supply also keeps the pulp from healing.

The second cause to have a root canal would be trauma or a fractured tooth. The tooth may not have enough structure left to restore, therefore needing a root canal to build upon.

Signs and Symptoms that you may need a Root Canal

If you have an infection, you may not feel any pain at first. But if it is not treated, the infection will cause pain and swelling. In some cases, a bump on the gum tissue, an abscess, will form.

Your tooth might need a root canal if:

  • It hurts when you bite down on it, touch it or push on it
  • It is sensitive to hot or cold
  • There is a bump on the gum tissue near the tooth
  • It is discolored (whether it hurts or not)
  • It is broken to where the tooth can't restored with a simple procedure

To determine whether your tooth needs root canal treatment, your dentist will examine the area, take an x-ray, and may even do some diagnostic testing to determine if the tooth is dead. If needed, the root canal procedure may take 1-3 visits. Once the canals have been cleaned, and the roots are filled a temporary filling is then placed in the tooth. The tooth should then be covered with a permanent filling or crown. The temporary filling you receive is not meant to last.

In most cases, the tooth will need a crown. A crown will help to restore the tooth's strength and protect it from cracking. If a crown is recommended, it should be placed soon after the completion of root canal treatment.