Root canal therapy is a very routine procedure. With much skill, endodontists are able to save natural teeth that would have otherwise succumbed to decay. Unfortunately, many patients still have hesitation when it comes to root canals - but knowing what to expect can make the overall experience much more comfortable.
What is Root Canal Therapy?
In its early stages, tooth decay can be treated with a filling to keep it from spreading any further. Though without addressing it at this stage, the decay is left to continue to spread throughout the tooth until it reaches the innermost pulp area.
This can cause the patient to experience many signs that signal a tooth may be in trouble, such as:
- Pain when chewing/biting (this can often be severe)
- Swollen, sore, inflamed gums
- Dark discoloration of the tooth
- Sensitivity to cold/hot foods or beverages - a pain that lingers
- Cracked, chipped, or otherwise broken tooth
- Small pimple-like bumps on the gums
Having any of these symptoms warrants a trip to the endodontist for root canal therapy that will save the tooth and offer relief from the pain.
So, just how does root canal therapy work?
Your endodontist will remove the inflamed pulp from the tooth. Then the root canals will be cleared out and the tooth will be disinfected. Sealing the tooth back up ensures that it is free from any additional bacteria getting in.
Generally, your endodontist will recommend that you follow through with a dental crown. This will allow you to strengthen the tooth and restore its integrity. It also will provide you with a natural-appearing tooth that functions beautifully, too.
First Step of Root Canal Therapy
Now that you know the signs that a root canal may be needed as well as an overview of the procedure, it is important to understand the first step of root canal therapy - and that is getting a proper diagnosis. Without it, your tooth decay can lead to more complex oral health issues.
There is a good chance that the pain and discomfort associated with a decayed tooth will lead you straight to the dental chair. Often, it may be evident that a root canal is necessary based on the symptoms you are having and by performing an oral evaluation.
Because digital imaging allows for confirmation, your endodontist will take x-rays to look for signs that a root canal may be needed. This involves looking at the shape of the root canals and whether or not there is any sign of infection - including infection in the bone.
Once it can be confirmed, you will move forward with prepping for the root canal therapy and with the procedure itself.
Root Canal Therapy at North Shore & Brookline Endodontics
The endodontic team at North Shore & Brookline Endodontics specializes in saving natural teeth using root canal therapy. And, thanks to our advanced technology, we can properly diagnose and treat your ailing teeth.
If you are experiencing any of the symptoms we have mentioned, it is important to make an appointment to be seen as soon as possible. Remember, tooth decay does not disappear on its own and will continue to spread in your tooth and into the bone.
For your convenience, we have multiple locations. Contact us today.