Endodontics is the dental specialty concerning the nerves of the teeth. Root canals are probably the most common procedure within endodontics dentistry. When a tooth becomes infected, the infection is usually related to the nerves in the root of the tooth. Typically when a nerve becomes infected, a person knows that something is wrong. Pain can be severe and sensitivity to heat, cold, and even biting down is very intense. If left untreated, an infection in the nerves can turn into an abscess and can become very serious, even leading to bone loss in the jaw. As a result, the infected nerve(s) need to be removed.
Many patients are frightened to hear that they may be facing the possibility of a root canal, but advances in dental technology have made it much less scary. Local anesthetics and proper pain medication allow the root canal procedure to be performed with little to no pain in most cases. In fact, from the patient’s point of view, the duration and pain involved with the procedure is very similar to having a cavity filled. There may be some soreness following the procedure, as with a filling, but tenderness and soreness is normal following most dental procedures. Over the counter painkillers are usually enough to relieve any pain afterwards, although your dentist may prescribe a stronger medication. A root canal procedure will also relieve you from pain caused by the infection, allowing you to enjoy all the foods you love without any pain from heat, cold, or biting too hard.
Root canal: what happens?
A root canal procedure starts with a local anesthetic around the area of the infected tooth. The dentist will then drill down into the tooth to create an opening into the canal. Through this opening, the dentist will be able to remove infected tissue and clean the canal. After the infection has been removed, the space is filled with a sealant. It is highly recommended that a tooth that has undergone a root canal be fitted with a dental crown. This will improve the appearance of the tooth, and will also make it much more likely that the root canal is successful.
There’s no need to suffer! If you are experiencing pain, call Maria Cielo Adjemian, DDS, PhD today for treatment.