Root canal treatment, sometimes called endodontic therapy, has become an increasingly routine dental procedure over the years due to modern advances in dentistry and care techniques. But some people still have a lot of questions about how they work, who should get root canal treatment, what you can expect during the procedure, and how much it costs.
A root canal is a treatment that’s used when the pulp (or soft nerve tissue) inside your tooth becomes infected by bacteria and starts to die or abscess. This can happen if you have a large untreated cavity, a deep crack in a tooth, or suffered from some type of traumatic injury even if it was years ago.
Root canal treatment is not painful at all. Just like getting a filling, our Encinitas dentist numbs your tooth completely before we begin the treatment. Then we clean out any infection and fill the decontaminated nerve chamber to seal it off. The only side effect is that you might experience is some minor soreness from where the local anesthetic was injected or in your jaw from keeping your mouth open. Fortunately, over-the-counter pain relievers are more than adequate for managing these temporary inconveniences.
Aside from allowing your numbing medication to wear off, you can typically return to your normal routine the same day or after. Dr. Skeens may need to place a temporary crown over the tooth while your permanent one is being made at a lab, so we do recommend avoiding chewing on that tooth for the time being.
Root canal treatment is a dental procedure that involves cleaning out the pulp chamber inside the tooth and filling it with a special material to help seal out any bacteria from re-entering the tooth. The root canal procedure typically takes up to two hours depending on how many roots the tooth has, and will not cause any pain because it’s done under local anesthesia.
Since a root canal removes the nerve inside your tooth, it’s physically impossible for your tooth to hurt afterward!
Root canal treatment should be completed by a qualified dentist who is experienced in endodontic therapy and has the right equipment in their offices. Some dentists refer their patients to specialists, but Dr. Gregory Skeens offers comprehensive treatments right here at our Encinitas dental practice.
Root canal treated teeth will need a dental crown afterward. A dental crown will serve as a protective covering for teeth to restore them to their natural shape and function. Plus, crowns protect your now non-vital tooth against premature wear or breakage (because they tend to be more brittle after endodontic treatment.)
Root canals are necessary for any tooth that is abscessed or dying. While some people request antibiotics or take pain relievers to manage their toothache, the bacteria inside of your tooth nerve will continue to cause recurring issues unless the area is treated by a dentist. Medications can temporarily ease swelling and inflammation so that numbing agents are more effective during your root canal treatment.
Untreated teeth will gradually deteriorate to the point where they need to be extracted, which is why early root canal treatment is important when it comes to preserving natural teeth.
We recommend saving your anatomical tooth when possible and only extracting the tooth once it has reached a point where it’s non-restorable. Dr. Skeens will discuss your situation with you so that you can feel confident about which steps to take in restoring your smile.
Dr. Gregory Skeens provides gentle endodontic treatments at our office in Encinitas. If you need a root canal or want a second opinion, call Encinitas Family Dentistry today.
Welcome to the Encinitas dental office of Gregory Skeens, JR., DDS. We are your home for caring dental treatment that supports superior oral health and helps you achieve the beautiful smile you’ve always wanted. Our modern facility is equipped with cutting-edge technology and our team is here to make your visit enjoyable and relaxing.
We take a truly individualized approach to dentistry, which is why our practice is so popular. After every treatment, Encinitas dentist Dr. Skeens personally makes follow- up phone calls to patients to ensure that they are feeling well. Your comfort and well-being are of ultimate importance.