Your tooth is made up of layers of enamel and dentin that protect the pulp at the center. Pulp is a collection of blood vessels and nerves that helps build the tooth at the root.
When a tooth becomes infected, it can be caused by:
Signs of a tooth infection include visible swelling around the tooth, sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures, and constant or intense pain in the tooth and surrounding gums. That’s when you’ll need a root canal to clear the infection from inside the tooth.
Once your dentist confirms that you have a tooth infection, they’ll most likely recommend non-surgical treatment to remove the infected pulp. Root canal therapy is fairly straight forward. The dentist applies local anesthetic to the area, removes the pulp, thoroughly cleans out decay from the inner canals of the tooth, then reshapes and seals up the tooth with a filling.
This treatment can typically be completed in one or more visits, depending on the extent of the infection. It’s successful in about 90% of cases, but if your tooth can’t be saved with root canal therapy, we will let you know when it’s more viable to extract the tooth.
As far as sedation during treatment, you can also let us know if you prefer nitrous oxide oral sedation to keep you calm and relaxed throughout the procedure. You’ll be able to drive home after your treatment, and you probably will be comfortable going back to your normal routine.
When your root canal treatment is completed, it’s best to schedule a follow-up restoration within a few weeks at our office. This will help make sure your tooth is protected from further damage and infection, as well as help restore its function.
Complications from root canal therapy is rare, but if you do feel any pain or discomfort, please contact us with any problems that come up. To prevent infections and tooth decay in the future, remember to practice good dental hygiene with daily brushing and flossing.
The cost of a root canal will vary depending on how severe the infection is and how much damage it caused to your teeth. In general, the treatment is much less expensive than extracting and replacing a tooth with a bridge or dental implant.
Are you experiencing dental pain from a toothache? You may need root canal therapy for a dental infection. Contact us today to schedule an appointment for an oral examination. We’ll make sure you get the treatment you need!