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What Does Root Canal Treatment Do?
If your tooth is very painful or keeping you from biting or chewing normally, you’re tooth’s soft inner pulp tissue may be damaged. A tooth’s pulp can become damaged from a deep cavity that has not been treated or from a broken or cracked tooth that leaves the pulp exposed. When the pulp is exposed to decay or bacteria, it becomes infected and needs to be removed before it leads to more serious and permanent tooth damage. Endodontic surgeries, or root canals, remove this infected pulp, permanently relieving your symptoms and restoring your tooth’s function.
Why Do I Need a Root Canal?
You may need a root canal if you have one or more of the following symptoms:
- Constant, moderate to agonizing tooth pain
- Swelling of the gums around your tooth
- Sensitivity to cold or hot temperatures that lasts for several minutes
- Tooth discoloration
- Pain that wakes you during the night
- Tooth pain when eating or biting into foods
These symptoms are also common for other dental problems, so it’s important to have a knowledgeable dentist make a diagnosis and treatment plan for you. If you are experiencing any of the warning signs we’ve listed above, call our office today. We’ll schedule you with one of our dentists who can help determine if a dental root canal can save your tooth.
Where Can I Find a Root Canal Dentist?
If you’re concerned about a possible tooth infection, call our office for an appointment with our experienced dentist. Once your case has been evaluated, we’ll connect you with the skilled provider who can best treat your tooth. For simple root canals, you may be treated by a general dentist. For more complicated surgeries, you may be referred to a specialist known as an endodontist. Endodontists focus on diagnosing and treating conditions affecting the interior of the tooth. With their extra two years of dental training, endodontists are qualified to perform a variety of dental surgeries, including re-treatment of root canals, placement of dental implants and treatment of traumatic tooth injuries.
How Is a Root Canal Procedure Performed?
There are usually three stages to simple root canals: preparation, the procedure itself and follow-up. The preparation and procedure take one to two hours, and you usually come back to our office in a couple of weeks for the follow-up appointment. Here’s what you can expect during your procedure:
- Your dentist takes x-rays to more closely examine the tooth and jawbone.
- Your dentist swabs the gum with a numbing agent, then injects a local anesthetic.
- Your dentist tests your mouth’s sensitivity to ensure that you remain comfortable throughout the procedure.
- A thin latex shield is stretched around the tooth to protect it from mouth bacteria and keep it dry during the procedure.
- Your dentist makes a tiny opening in the tooth’s crown which creates access to the tooth pulp chamber.
- Tooth pulp is removed, and the dentist cleans out and shapes the canals of the tooth roots.
- Exposed root canals are flushed with a disinfecting liquid to remove debris and bacteria.
- Clean and dry root canals are filled and sealed with a biocompatible rubbery substance.
- The opening in the tooth crown is filled and a temporary root canal crown is placed on top of the tooth.
- The temporary filling and crown are removed.
- A permanent crown caps the tooth, protecting it from damage and providing extra structure to the tooth.
How Much Will a Root Canal Cost?
Your individual needs will help determine your cost for dental root canal treatment. The type of tooth being treated greatly affects the overall price. That’s because front teeth have just one root, while molars have four roots. Molar roots are more complicated to treat because they’re difficult to reach and often curved in a “c” or “s” shape. Other issues affecting your cost include the extent of your tooth’s infection, whether you need additional treatments before or after the procedure and whether a general dentist or an endodontist performs the treatment.
What Types of Root Canals Are Available?
Root canals can be effective for any type of tooth, but they most frequently save damaged molars. Apicoectomy might be an option for patients with unsuccessful prior treatment, as it removes any lingering diseased tissue and the tip of the tooth root. A pediatric pulpotomy is an option for some kids, removing diseased tissue while leaving nerves intact.
Is Treatment Painful?
Root canals may be notoriously dreaded, but the use of local anesthetics helps us ensure that you’re comfortable throughout the procedure. There’s no reason to risk your health by delaying treatment, call us now to find out if your tooth can be saved. We’re honored to be trusted with your dental health and look forward to helping you find pain relief with a root canal in Tampa.