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Has your root canal dentist or endodontist told you that you need root canal treatment? If so, you’re not alone — a root canal is an extremely common procedure used to save a tooth from complete decay. Most root canals are avoidable if you get a dental filling for your cavity promptly. However, cavities don’t cause any pain or discomfort, so they continue spreading if you don’t go for regular dental checkups, eventually affecting your tooth’s pulp chamber. When that happens, you need a root canal treatment from a reputable root canal dentist in Houston, Texas.
People are usually terrified of root canals, even though they’re fairly simple and safe procedures without any side effects or downtime. Most of the concern arises due to a lack of awareness about root canals. We want to set the record straight — if you need a root canal explained, please continue reading to learn about root canals from a reputable root canal dentist in Houston, TX.
What is a root canal?
The term “root canal” refers to a part of the tooth’s anatomy and its treatment. As such, to understand root canal treatment, you must also understand the root canal anatomy. The human tooth comprises several layers, including the enamel, dentin, and pulp chamber. The root canal is a part of the innermost layer, i.e., the pulp chamber containing the pulp tissues and nerves.
A root canal treatment is a procedure used to treat an infected pulp chamber, removing the infected pulp tissues and nerves to prevent bacterial decay from spreading. Bacterial decay usually spreads into the root canal if a superficial dental cavity is left untreated for an extended period. Once the innermost root canal is compromised, a root canal treatment is the only way to save your tooth from complete decay.
How does a root canal dentist determine if you need a root canal treatment?
Root canal treatment becomes necessary when the pulp tissues within the root canal become inflamed or infected. During your consultation, the root canal dentist will take dental x-rays to examine your root canal. The x-ray usually identifies possible infections and inflammations. If left untreated, the inflamed or infected tissues can lead to a dental abscess, which is potentially life-threatening.
What are the signs that a root canal is needed?
The following are some of the most common signs that you may need a root canal treatment:
- Extreme sensitivity to temperatures.
- Severe dental pain while chewing and biting.
- Deep dental cavities.
- Extremely chipped or cracked teeth.
- Swollen, darkened, tender, or bleeding gums.
How does a root canal procedure save a tooth?
During the root canal procedure, the root canal dentist removes all the inflamed or infected pulp tissues and nerves, carefully disinfects the insides of the root canal, and seals it with a sealer paste. Finally, the dentist office near me put a dental crown over the tooth to protect it from damage. As such, this entire procedure prevents the infection from spreading and protects the weakened tooth.
Do I feel any pain after the root canal?
Root canal procedures are often conducted to relieve pain and discomfort from an infected tooth. Modern root canal treatments cause minimal discomfort, but no pain, especially because your nerves may already be dead, so you don’t feel anything. The dentist also administers local anesthesia to further numb sensation. Your tooth may feel a little sensitive for a few days after the root canal treatment, but the pain and sensitivity go away soon.
Can I be sedated for a root canal?
The root canal dentist administers local anesthesia to numb sensation around the affected tooth. However, if you’re experiencing severe anxiety, you can also opt for sedation options, such as nitrous oxide, IV sedation, or conscious oral sedation. Discuss the sedation options with your root canal dentist.
What happens during root canal therapy?
- The root canal dentist examines your teeth and takes dental x-rays.
- After the examination, the dentist injects local anesthesia around the affected tooth’s gums to numb sensation and places a dental dam around the tooth to prevent saliva from interfering with the procedure.
- The root canal dentist creates a small opening on the tooth’s crown, drilling an access hole to reach the root canal.
- After drilling the access hole, the root canal dentist removes the infected tissues and nerves, cleans the root canal, and applies medicine to disinfect the tooth.
- The root canal dentist provides temporary filling and asks you to return for the final session after a week.
- During the second session, the dentist determines if the infection is completely gone. If so, the dentist seals the hole with gutta-percha.
- The dentist takes measurements for your tooth crown.
- On the final visit, the root canal dentist attaches the dental crown over the affected tooth.
What does the root canal cost?
The cost of a root canal procedure depends on several factors, but the average root canal cost in Texas is around $1,000. You can get insurance coverage for root canals because they’re medically necessary procedures.
What is root canal recovery like?
Your tooth may feel a little sensitive for a few days, and you’ll be advised against biting and eating with that tooth. However, after getting the dental crown, you can continue using the tooth normally. You can resume your daily activities immediately after the root canal.
Contact a root canal dentist today.
URBN Dental is a highly-reputable dental clinic in Uptown Houston, known for state-of-the-art technologies and an incredibly friendly dental care staff. For more information, please schedule an appointment with our emergency dentist today.