ROOT CANAL TREATMENT
Gentle Root Canals (Princeton, NJ)
Sometimes, a tooth can become so infected or suffer from such large areas of decay that bacteria come into contact with the inner nerve structure (pulp) leading to severe pain or an abscess. Abscesses generally present themselves as a small pimple on the gums that may come and go over time.
While an abscessed tooth can be extremely painful, there are times where such teeth can be completely asymptomatic. You may never even realize that the nerve of your tooth is infected until after we’ve taken an X-ray of the root.
Unfortunately, filling such teeth isn’t enough to help you preserve and restore them for an extended period of time. When the inner nerve is infected, only a root canal can help to maintain the tooth for several more years.
Are Root Canals Painful?
Thanks to advancements in endodontic therapy, it’s possible to be just as comfortable for a root canal as it is for a basic filling. In most cases, the pain comes from swelling around the tooth prior to your root canal appointment. Dr. Bestandji may need to place you on an antibiotic prior to the procedure to eliminate swelling, making it easier to numb your tooth on the day of treatment. However, an antibiotic won’t “heal” the infection or prevent it from returning, due to the open crack or area of decay that needs to be sealed off.
What Happens During a Root Canal?
Endodontic therapy consists of:
- Removing the infected nerve
- Removing decaying tooth structure
- Cleaning and medicating the hollow chamber inside of your tooth
- Filling and sealing off the nerve chamber
- Crowning the tooth to prevent any damage to the non-vital enamel
During your procedure, the tooth is thoroughly numbed so that you do not have to experience any type of discomfort. Depending on which tooth needs a root canal, there may be anywhere from 1-3 roots to treat. Longer procedures may require a small prop to prevent your mouth from becoming sore, simply due to keeping it mouth open for an extended period of time. Thanks to highly effective anesthetic, your procedure should be relatively painless.
Is it Better to Extract Your Tooth Instead?
Our Princeton, NJ root canal dentist may recommend removing your tooth if there’s not enough structure to restore or support a crown. However, it’s usually best to preserve your tooth through endodontic therapy so as to avoid an unnecessary extraction. Your teeth play an important role in overall bite alignment and function, and it’s best to maintain your natural ones for as long as possible. In instances involving severe pain or dental emergencies, an extraction may sometimes be warranted.
Get a Second Opinion
Do you need a root canal? Are you hesitant about going straight to an endodontist? Princeton, NJ family dentist Dr. Bestandji is here to answer any questions that you have about the process, including offering second opinions. Contact Canal Vista Family Dental today to request an appointment.