Are you in excruciating tooth pain? Has your tooth pain lasted for more than two days?
Visit Chapel Hill Cosmetic and Family Dentistry for a dental exam to determine the cause of your tooth pain. If you have a tooth infection in your tooth root, you may need a root canal procedure. Root canal therapy, often simply referred to as a root canal, is a dental procedure designed to save and repair a severely damaged or infected tooth. Dr. Furgurson or Dr. White may perform your root canal in Chapel Hill, NC from the comforts of their dentist office, or refer you to a local endodontist for treatment.
What is a Root Canal Procedure?
A root canal is a necessary dental procedure that we use to treat damaged or infected tooth. When an infection reaches the innermost part of the tooth, the pulp which contains nerves and blood vessels, it causes irreversible damage. The damaged or infected pulp must then be removed in order to save the tooth.
A root canal procedure involves creating access to the inner chambers of the tooth where the pulp is located. Then your Chapel Hill dentist will remove the pulp and clean out the inside of the tooth to remove all signs of infection. A root canal procedure is the best way to preserve a natural tooth and prevent further damage to your smile.
Is a Root Canal Procedure Painful?
A root canal is often thought of as being a very painful procedure. A root canal is typically no more painful than a tooth filling. In fact, this treatment is capable of relieving your pain almost immediately. The pain most people fear is from the infection itself and the inflammation and pressure it causes. We understand there is misinformation about this procedure and will take the time to answer all your questions to put you at ease. We also strive to make you as comfortable as possible during your treatment.
What to Expect: Root Canal in Chapel Hill, NC
To begin the root canal process, we will administer local anesthesia to ensure that you feel no pain during the procedure. Your Chapel Hill dentist will then drill a small hole in your tooth to gain access to the pulp chamber and root canals. The infected or damaged pulp is then carefully removed using specialized instruments. The dentist will thoroughly clean and disinfect the space inside the tooth’s chamber.
Once clean, your dentist will shape the root canals to prepare for the filling. A biocompatible material, usually gutta-percha, is used to fill the canals. Once the inside of the filled, they will seal the access hole on the outside of the tooth. In most cases, we will place a dental crown over the treated tooth to provide additional protection and restore its functionality.
Root Canal vs. Tooth Extraction
The best treatment choice will depend on your specific situation. However, in most cases it is best for the patient to preserve the natural tooth with a root canal or another treatment. Tooth extraction due to damage or decay can have an effect on your overall dental health. The lessen the effects, you must replace the tooth as soon as possible.
An extracted tooth should always be replaced as soon as possible to prevent neighboring teeth from shifting and to reduce the risk of bone loss, tooth decay, and gum disease.
The dentist can typically complete the root canal procedure during a single visit to our office. With the use of a local anesthetic, most patients experience minimal to no discomfort during their treatment. In many cases, the root canal relieves the pain of an infected or badly damaged tooth. After the procedure, we will then begin the steps to have a dental crown placed on the tooth for added protection and support.
Root Canal FAQs
Hearing that you need a root canal may cause sudden fear and anxiety. However, this is a necessary procedure that will save your tooth, preventing a tooth extraction. We encourage you to ask questions and learn as much about the procedure as you can. This will help ease your fears and anxiety. You can begin by reading through the following frequently asked questions about root canals. If you still have further questions or concerns, please contact us for help.
What is a root canal?
The term root canal refers to the inside of a tooth where the pulp and nerves are. A root canal procedure, or root canal therapy, is the treatment you need to remove the diseased pulp from the root canal. You will need this treatment if you have a significantly damaged tooth or decay that extends into the pulp chamber. Tooth pain is usually the first sign patients experience, though a dentist can spot infection during routine exam.
How do I know if I need a root canal?
You may need a root canal if you experience severe toothache, especially when chewing or applying pressure. Other signs include prolonged sensitivity to hot or cold, swollen or tender gums, a pimple on the gums, or darkening of the tooth. However, only your Chapel Hill dentist can tell you if you need a root canal through a comprehensive examination, X-rays, and an assessment of your symptoms.
How much does a root canal cost?
Factors that go into determining the price of the root canal procedure include the extent of damage to the tooth and type of restoration needed (ex. dental filing vs. dental crown). Some dental insurance providers will pay for all or part of the cost of root canal therapy. Dr. Furgurson’s office staff will assist you with all billing and documentation for your insurance company to help maximize your benefits.
What should I do if I fear a root canal procedure?
For our patients who suffer from dental anxiety, we offer sedation dentistry. This will allow you to receive the care you need and restore your oral health.
How long do root canals take to settle?
The majority of patients recover from their root canal after a few days. This is not common, but occasionally patients develop difficulties post procedure that require an extended recovery period that may last up to two weeks.
How much pain is normal after a root canal?
Over-the-counter pain medication such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen can help with your discomfort after a root canal procedure.
Can I brush my teeth after root canal?
After a root canal dentists encourage their patients to brush their teeth, but to be extra careful around the site of the procedure. You can clean your teeth normally after the numbing medication used during your procedure has worn off.
Do I have to get a root canal?
A root canal effectively eliminates pain, saves the natural tooth, and prevents the spread of infection. Despite its reputation, modern techniques and anesthesia make root canals relatively comfortable. They are crucial for preserving oral health and preventing the need for tooth extraction.
A root canal treatment is a valuable treatment we use to help save our patient’s teeth. If you are suffering from tooth pain, tooth sensitivity, or have concerns about your dental health, contact Chapel Hill Cosmetic and Family Dentistry. We can provide you with a root canal in Chapel Hill, NC if necessary. You can reach us at 919.736.6175 or you can request an appointment online.