The Facts on Root Canals
In honor of Root Canal Awareness Week, it is time you get the facts on root canals. Dispelling common myths surrounding root canals can make it easier to choose this endodontic procedure. If your dentist suggest a root canal to save your tooth, it is important that you follow through. Knowing what to expect can ease your anxiety and help you understand why a root canal was suggested in the first place. Gilreath Dental Associates strongly believes in educating each patient in detail before any treatment is recommended.
In the past, root canal methods were accomplished very differently than they are today. Which brings us to the most important myth that needs to be debunked when it comes to root canals. With today’s advanced procedure methods and technology, root canals are no longer painful. However, an infected tooth certainly is. If you have an infected tooth that is causing you discomfort, it will help to understand why a root canal may be in order.
A root canal is an endodontic treatment that treats the inside of your tooth. Enamel and dentin make up the hard outside layers of your tooth. The inside is composed of tooth pulp, which includes blood vessels, nerves and connective tissues. If your teeth are fully grown, you no longer need the pulp of your tooth. When there is deep decay, faulty crowns or trauma to the tooth pulp, it will create inflammation and infection inside your tooth. So now that you understand the anatomy of your tooth and just what is going on in there, it is time to explain how a root canal can help.
A root canal saves a tooth. During this treatment, the inflamed pulp is carefully removed and the inside of the tooth is cleaned and disinfected. Your dentist will then fill and seal the tooth. Patients typically get a crown or filling for added protection after a root canal. Again, contrary to jokes and popular belief, a root canal procedure is very much like getting a filling and it only takes a couple of appointments in most circumstances.
If you have been told you need a root canal, we hope you will now realize its important. For a badly infected tooth, your alternatives are either tooth extraction or living with unbearably painful tooth. The investment in a successful root canal, which is accomplished more than 85% of the time, is well worth it for a healthy, pain-free smile!
Posted on behalf of Dr. Paul Gilreath IV, Gilreath Dental Associates