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Root Canals

Root Canals In Sandy, UT

It is always preferable to save a damaged or infected tooth rather than have it pulled or extracted. Luckily, with today’s technology there are many options available to do just that. The most common treatment for teeth that are plagued by severe infection is the root canal. The term root canal refers to the cleaning and treatment of the root of your tooth. Though it is an extensive treatment, it is the best option to save your tooth and keep you smiling!

Prior to being scheduled for a root canal, patients typically complain of pain in the tooth and gums. During the examination, the dentist will determine how severe the infection is by ordering X-rays. The X-rays will show the severity and location of the infection in the tooth. If the dentist sees the infection has moved from the tooth to the roots, he will likely recommend a root canal. In more extreme cases, extracting the infected tooth may be necessary.

Once the dentist has determined the need for the root canal, you will be scheduled for your procedure. Be sure to let your dentist or hygienist know of any medications you are on, as some medications can cause bleeding. For most, the procedure is performed under local anesthesia, meaning only the area around the infected tooth is numbed. Though it is often thought to be more painful, most patients agree that a root canal is no more painful than receiving a filling.

Once the anesthesia is given, the dentist will begin the root canal by performing a pulpectomy. A pulpectomy involves the dentist making an opening in the crown of the tooth, then proceeding to remove the infected pulp. The infected pulp will also be removed from the root using a special file. Once all the disease is removed, the dentist will shape the roots in preparation to be filled.

Now that your tooth is infection and disease free, the dentist will clean and disinfect the open area. The roots will be filled with a permanent material to prevent future infection. The next step is to rebuild the tooth using a temporary filler. Depending on the circumstances, you will either receive a permanent filling or a crown later. A crown is a natural colored cap that covers the tooth entirely. In some cases, the dentist will insert a small post under the cap to give it extra support.

After receiving your root canal, the dentist will likely schedule a follow-up appointment. This appointment will involve checking on the condition of the tooth through examination and sometimes X-rays. It is important to properly care for the treated tooth, as root canals have a great rate of success. They typically will last a lifetime with proper care and attention. Be sure to brush your teeth twice a day and floss as recommended by your dentist. Avoid chewing hard foods, such as ice, because they can break teeth and cause damage to the treated teeth. After the healing process, if you experience any unusual pain or discomfort, contact your dentist right away.