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What is a Root Canal?
Root canals are procedures where a dentist removes any damaged soft pulp, including the nerves, from inside your tooth. Our dentist performs root canals when the pulp is infected or tooth decay has spread to the pulp, causing you severe pain. Dentists also suggest root canals if trauma, such as an accident that severely fractured a tooth, reached the pulp.
When Would I Need a Root Canal Procedure?
Our dentist will suggest the procedure when there is no other way to save your tooth, but as a last resort before extraction. Signs that you may need a root canal include:
- Severe tooth pain
- Swollen gum tissue near the tooth
- Tooth discoloration
What Type of Dentist Should I See for a Dental Root Canal?
Our general dentist can perform most root canals. However, if the procedure is complicated, he or she may refer you to a local endodontist, which specializes in treating diseases on the inside of a tooth. Please call our office to schedule an appointment for an examination.
What Is the Procedure for a Root Canal?
An uncomplicated version of the procedure goes like this:
- Our dentist numbs the tooth and isolates the area
- Our dentist makes an opening in the crown of the tooth to reach the pulp, and then removes it
- The canals are cleaned and disinfected
- Our dentist fills the canals with a special material and places a filling in the hole used to access the pulp
- You’ll learn why a root canal crown may be necessary to prevent the tooth, especially a molar, from cracking
- You may receive a temporary filling right after your procedure and then you’ll choose a permanent crown to go over your tooth on your next visit.
How Much Does a Root Canal Cost?
The cost depends on which tooth needs the procedure and how damaged the tooth is; our dentist can provide you with an estimate after an examination. If you have dental insurance, it may cover part of the cost. Give us a call today to schedule your appointment with our root canal dentist.
Are There Different Types of Root Canals?
In addition to conventional root canals, there are pediatric pulpotomies, which leaves much of the pulp intact in a child’s baby tooth. It’s better to leave the baby tooth in until it falls out naturally, as it preserves that space. Apicoectomies involve removing and sealing a tiny portion of the tooth’s root. An apicoectomy procedure is usually done after a persistent infection develops after one root canal procedure has already been performed.
Is a Dental Root Canal Treatment Painful?
Contrary to popular belief, root canals are not painful; instead, the procedure relieves severe pain. Our dentist will not proceed unless he or she is certain that the area is numb. After the procedure, you may feel minor pain for several days. You’ll go home with aftercare instructions and suggestions for OTC pain relievers to manage the pain. Contact our office today to arrange an appointment with our dentist. If you are in severe pain, let us know that you need the first available appointment.