Clement Park Dental Care

8500 W. Bowles Ave. Suite 305, Littleton, CO 80123-3276
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Why Would I Need A Root Canal?

Signs You Need A Root Canal

ADVANCED TECHNIQUES AND TECHNOLOGIES FOR A MODERN ROOT CANAL
Even if you're taking great care of your smile, you might at some point experience pain or discomfort in one or more of your teeth. While many things can cause toothaches, tooth decay is the top cause of tooth pain. In some cases, the decay might cause internal damage to the tooth, requiring a root canal to deal with the pain and save the tooth. Most people fear root canals because they assume they will be painful. However, as a result of advances in the dental industry and modern sedation techniques, root canals by a dentist in Littleton, CO can be completed quickly with very little pain during and after. Learn more about root canal therapy and the difference from a regular dental filling by reading the information provided below:

ROOT CANAL BASICS
A root canal treatment is a dental procedure that is used to fix a tooth that is infected or badly decayed. This procedure is typically performed when the pulp (the innermost portion) of the tooth becomes damaged or infected. During this therapy, the pulp is fully removed and the inside chamber of the tooth is cleaned and sealed. A root canal is one of the many dental procedures that have benefited from modern medical technology and methods. Although root canals used to be scary and painful, modern root canals are achieved more efficiently with little to no discomfort. Getting a root canal can heal your tooth and overall oral health.

DO I NEED A FILLING OR ROOT CANAL?
Dental cavities are a normal problem caused by buildup that eventually leads to enamel decay. While they range in size and severity, cavities can normally be treated with a simple filling. This procedure includes the use of a composite material to fill the area once the decayed area on the surface of the enamel is cleaned away. If a cavity is not caught and treated, the infection can spread from the surface of the tooth into the pulp. Once this happens, a root canal is required to remove the infected interior pulp. If the infection is not treated, it can spread to your other teeth as well as your gums, jaw, and blood stream. As you can see, it's easier to have the problem recognized and addressed sooner. This is one of the reasons Clement Park Dental Care advocates everyone in Littleton, CO get annual oral health exams by a board-certified dentist. X-rays and other tools help your dentist identify cavities before you need an extraction or root canal.

SYMPTOMS OF A ROOT INFECTION
Like many dental problems, a toothache is a sign that you could need a root canal. The pain inside your tooth might be constant or only when you try to eat. Another common sign of an infected tooth is sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures. Darkening or discoloration of the tooth as well as swelling and tenderness of the gums could also suggest the need for a root canal treatment. From time to time, infection of the nerves and pulp inside the tooth could result in chronic sores on the gums around the tooth. In case you have any of these signs, you should contact a dentist in Littleton, CO to get an appointment for an oral health exam right away. Bring a list of your symptoms and when they appeared to help your dentist diagnose your problem.

THE PROCESS
A root canal can be performed by your dentist or an endodontist, typically in one visit. The very first step is to take digital x-rays of your teeth to check if the infection has affected other areas. Your dentist will numb the area with local anesthesia to ensure you do not feel discomfort or pain during the procedure. Sedation options might be provided if you have dental phobias, or in the event that you would prefer to be more relaxed during the treatment. Next, to keep the tooth dry during the treatment, a member of your dental team will place a rubber dental dam around the tooth. Then, an access point will be gently made in the tooth using a dental drill. Through the hole, the interior will be taken out of the tooth. This is done using a careful cleaning process that scrubs away any remaining bacteria. Once the cleaning process is complete, the tooth will be filled and sealed. In many cases, your dentist will recommend putting a dental crown over the treated tooth for strength and protection. Clement Park Dental Care offers custom dental crowns that are made to blend seamlessly with your natural teeth. With the restoration, the tooth should be safe and will be just like the rest of your teeth.

FOLLOWING YOUR ROOT CANAL
Root canal therapy should very quickly and efficiently relieve any pain you felt before the procedure. Until your root canal therapy is finished and your crown has been placed, it may be smart to avoid eating hard or chewy items. Your tooth will probably be delicate until the restoration is placed and may become re-contaminated if the tooth breaks before the procedure can be completed. In the first few days following the treatment, your tooth may feel sensitive as a result of natural tissue inflammation, especially if there was pain before the treatment. Your dentist may prescribe pain medication to help you manage the discomfort. Normally, patients can return to their normal activities the next day. You should brush and floss your teeth as you generally would and continue visiting your dentist at normally scheduled intervals.

HOW TO AVOID A ROOT CANAL
Many teeth fixed with root canal treatment can be healthy for a long time; however, most people would be delighted to never need a root canal. You can avoid needing a root canal by visiting a dentist in Littleton, CO twice a year for oral health exams and cleanings, as well as following a regular home oral care routine with twice daily brushing and flossing. If you get a cavity and it is found and addressed early, the decay will not become severe enough to damage the pulp inside your tooth. If you're looking for a board-certified dentist in Littleton, CO to look after your family's teeth, contact Clement Park Dental Care to schedule a consultation. Our experienced team will help treat any existing issues and develop a proactive treatment plan to help decrease your risk of a tooth infection that calls for a root canal.

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.