Dentist in Indianapolis, IN describes the process of root canal treatment for dental concerns
Indianapolis, IN area patients who are experiencing a severe toothache may be concerned about what type of dental care they require to be brought back to their original oral health. Many fear having a treatment called a “root canal” performed for their smile. Dental procedures such as this often bring about questions in regard to the process needed to achieve results. Instead of being worried about root canal therapy, it is important for patients to understand the process and know what it entails – and find out that it isn’t painful or troublesome at all!
What is root canal therapy?
Dr. Matthew Church describes root canal therapy, sometimes called endodontic treatment, as a procedure done to save a natural tooth from extraction. Root canal therapy is the removal of the dental pulp within the tooth that can cause pain and discomfort. It is done to save the tooth and improve oral health while making patients comfortable again. The procedure itself is nothing new to dentistry. Unfortunately, when people hear the words “root canal,” they often think of pain. The procedure does not cause pain – in fact, the procedure allows patients to be pain-free.
What is the process of root canal therapy?
The process starts with an evaluation and initial diagnosis. This may involve a physical examination as well as x-rays to check the health of the smile. Once patients have learned about root canal therapy and are interested in receiving treatment, the procedure can begin. First, the dentist will make a very small hole in the tooth to allow him to access the inner portion. Using special instruments, he is able to remove the dental pulp. The dental pulp is a mass of tissues that include the nerves and blood vessels that keep the tooth alive. By removing these, the tooth is deadened, and patients will feel no more pain from the tooth. Using gutta percha and composite resin, Dr. Matthew Church will seal off the canals and the tooth to complete the procedure. For some teeth, a dental crown may be placed over the top to offer an extra layer of protection and strength.
Why might I need root canal therapy?
There are many situations in which patients may be told they can benefit from root canal therapy to bring the smile back to health:
- Injury – if there has been trauma to a tooth, it may cause a problem and result in the need for endodontic treatment.
- Infection – an infection that has reached the dental pulp may result in pain and discomfort that can be difficult for a patient to control without treatment.
- Abscess – an abscess can also cause pain that cannot be resolved with pain medications.
- Large cavities – cavities that are large and have been untreated can reach the dental pulp and result in an infection that can be extremely painful.
- Diseased nerves – nerves or other elements of the dental pulp that have become diseased may require patients to consider treatments such as root canal therapy.
What alternatives are available instead of root canal therapy?
The only other option to address the issue within a tooth is with extraction. Along with extraction comes costly procedures. Not only does the tooth need to be removed, but then a replacement needs to be considered as soon as possible. Replacements for teeth include dentures, dental implants, or dental bridges. Some of these need to be replaced or repaired regularly, which can add on hundreds of dollars over the years. Instead, root canal therapy is performed once, and the tooth is often saved. Root canal therapy is successful approximately 90 percent of the time in saving the tooth. This is why it is the first course of action before we decide to remove the tooth.
Want to learn more about root canal therapy?
Contact Dr. Matthew Church and his team of professionals at Washington Street Dentistry at 10935 East Washington Street in Indianapolis, Indiana. By calling (317) 333-6788, you can book your visit and enjoy the services available in his state-of-the-art dental center. Learn more about our general, cosmetic, and restorative dentistry solutions for the entire family with a simple phone call to our practice.