What is a root canal?
A root canal is one the most common dental procedures performed. Well over 14 million occur every year. Root canals can save your natural teeth and prevent the need for dental implants or bridges.At the center of your tooth is pulp. Pulp is a collection of blood vessels that help build the surrounding tooth. Infection of the pulp can be caused by trauma to the tooth, deep decay, cracks and chips, or repeated dental procedures. Symptoms of the infection can be identified as visible injury or swelling of the tooth, sensitivity to temperature or pain in the tooth and gums.
How is a root canal performed?If you experience any of these symptoms, your dentist will most likely recommend non-surgical treatment to eliminate the diseased pulp. You may be referred to a root canal specialist (endodontist). This injured pulp is removed and the root canal systems thoroughly cleaned and sealed. This therapy involves local anesthesia and may be completed in one or more visits depending on the treatment required. Success for this type of treatment occurs in about 90% of cases.
If your tooth is not amenable to endodontic treatment, or if the chance of success is unfavorable, you will be informed at the time of consultation, or when a complication becomes evident during or after treatment. We use local anesthesia to eliminate discomfort. In addition, we will provide nitrous oxide analgesia if indicated. You will be able to drive home after treatment, and you will probably be comfortable returning to your daily routine.
What happens after treatment?When your root canal therapy has been completed, a record of your treatment will be sent to us. Please contact our office for a follow-up restoration within a few weeks of completion at the endodontist’s office. Dr. Guess will decide what type of restoration will best protect your tooth. It is rare for endodontic patients to experience complications after routine treatment or microsurgery. If a problem does occur, we are available at all times to respond. To prevent further decay, continue to practice good dental hygiene.
How much will it cost?
The cost associated with a root canal can vary depending on several factors, such as the severity of damage to the affected tooth and even which tooth is affected. In general, endodontic treatment is much less expensive than tooth removal and replacement with an artificial tooth.