A visit to the endodontist may not be a regular occurrence, but it can relieve serious oral problems. This dental professional focuses on diagnosing and treating injuries to and abnormalities of the teeth’s pulp. A root canal is one of the most common procedures this doctor will perform. You may have anxiety when you hear…
Learn More About Surgical and Nonsurgical Root Canal Therapy
When you get the news that you need a root canal, your head may start to spin. If you are already nervous when at regular dental appointments, having to come back in for a surgical procedure can churn up the stress. You may not know that you have a couple of options when it comes to the way to fix the issue. Ask your dentist or endodontist about the surgical and nonsurgical therapy options that may be available to you.
The root of the problem
You may not understand how your tooth's root became damaged, especially if you practice good oral hygiene. According to the American Association of Endodontists, millions of people find themselves in need of a root canal every year. It is a necessary procedure when the pulp around the root of the tooth becomes infected and inflamed. This breach may be caused by various issues:
- A crack or chip in the tooth
- Untreated or over-treated tooth decay
- Impact injury to that area of the mouth
If intervention does not occur, the tooth can die and need pulling.
Options for treatment
Nonsurgical root canal
When thinking about a root canal, you probably picture the traditional procedure. During this treatment, the area of the mouth is numbed and the patient is put under anesthesia through gas or other means. The dentist or endodontist then sets out to remove the infected pulp, flush out the root canal system, clean the inside of the tooth once the pulp is removed and reseal the tooth with a crown. A crown is usually white resin and looks exactly like the tooth. It is there to seal it from further intrusion by food, germs and the like.
Depending on how extensive the infection and damage is, the procedure can take anywhere from 30 minutes to well over an hour. Speak to your dental professional about what you can expect before, during and after the process so there are no surprises.
Surgical root canal
Sometimes the traditional procedure is not enough to save the tooth. If the pain and inflammation continue, the next step is endodontic surgery. During this process, the patient is once again put under anesthesia. The doctor then does a resection of the root itself, removing it and then filling the space if necessary. The dentist may also go deeper into the gum and make sure that the bones of the jaw are clear of infection. Surgical intervention may be a last-ditch effort to save the tooth. It may be a lengthier procedure and can mean a longer recovery time.
When dealing with a root canal, it is best to ask your dentist or endodontist the best course of action they recommend. Make sure that you have all the facts, and understand that if surgery is being recommended, it is usually a last resort. Keeping your own set of teeth is the end goal, and a dentist can help you do just that, pain- and infection-free.
Check out what others are saying about our services on Yelp: Read our Yelp reviews.
If someone suggests to you that you need to see an endodontist, you must have a severe condition. A general dentist provides overall oral health care and treats moderate conditions. An endodontist has additional knowledge and training of the tooth’s roots and pulp. Before you make an appointment to see this dentist, you should consider…
Even though many people associate the need for a root canal with tooth decay, a variety of conditions can lead a dentist to recommend one. In some cases, dental issues such as a chipped tooth cannot be ignored or fixed easily through cosmetic-type procedures. How do you know when your chipped tooth needs to be…
A cracked tooth can become very problematic and lead to other, more concerning oral health problems if not properly dealt with in a timely manner. By understanding exactly what to do after enduring a cracked tooth, you can ensure you receive proper treatment and keep the pain and sensitivity at a tolerable level.Along with treatment…