Preserve a natural tooth or teeth with a root canal. Root canals can prevent tooth extractions by preserving a natural tooth. Preserving one or more teeth can help support adjacent teeth and prevent tooth decay from spreading. The pulp found inside the root canal in the center of each tooth is made up of nerves and soft tissue.
These nerves and tissue can become infected and cause decay. A root canal procedure is used to remove the infection for patients with severe tooth decay. Premier Dental Care is your general dentist in Los Angeles County, California.
Symptoms of Tooth Infection
There are several common signs of infection to be aware of:
- Tooth sensitivity to temperature and pressure
- Face swelling
- Pain in the neck, jaw, or ear
- Difficulty swallowing
If you have noticed any of these symptoms, call
You can also stop an infection before it begins. Some helpful tips include:
- Scheduling regular checkups and cleanings
- Replacing your toothbrush every 3 to 4 months
- Use dental floss when you brush your teeth
- Using fluoride toothpaste and water
- Limiting sugary foods and drinks
You may be more prone to infection if you suffer from dry mouth, have a diet high in sugar, or have poor hygiene. Be aware of your risk factors and take the steps above if you can.
Root Canal Treatment
Dr. Naguib can complete your root canal treatment over one to three office visits depending on your specific needs and the amount of infection that needs to be removed. To begin the procedure, a small hole is drilled through the top of the tooth into the inner chamber.
The diseased tissue is removed and the chamber is cleaned and disinfected. The chamber and tooth canals are filled with a rubbery elastic material. This material seals the tooth and keeps decay out of the now-cleaned and disinfected tooth.
Many times, a dental crown will be fitted over the tooth. A crown can help stabilize the tooth and ensure that you get the full function of that tooth back after the root canal is performed.
Root canal treatment often gets a bad rap from people. You’ve probably heard a lot about root canals being painful. But the treatment itself isn’t the cause of the pain. When the dental pulp inside your tooth is infected, it becomes swollen.
A lot of pressure is put on the surrounding areas, causing pain, especially when you’re chewing or biting down on something.
A root canal procedure actually helps to relieve you of this pain. Many patients say that their pain is improved immensely after treatment. We remove the infected material so that the pressure is gone from your tooth.
You may experience some discomfort in the days following the procedure but should have complete relief by the time everything is healed.
Root Canal FAQs
What happens if you leave a tooth that needs a root canal?
If you leave a root canal issue left untreated for too long, it has the potential to become infected and spread the infection to your gums. This can spread and cause large issues, such as tooth loss, that may need immediate dental work.
What should you not do before a root canal?
Before a root canal, patients should avoid drinking or smoking at least 24 hours before the procedure. You should eat and drink on the morning of the procedure. Many patients take an over-the-counter painkiller before the root canal to help with the pain.
What should I avoid after a root canal?
Patients should avoid eating or drinking anything temperature sensitive after a root canal. Anything hot or cold may trigger tooth sensitivity. Patients should also avoid eating sticky, chewy, and hard foods. It is best to stick to a soft diet for at least a day after your procedure.
How long does a root canal last?
The longevity of a root canal treatment can vary, but with good oral hygiene, it can often last a lifetime. Factors such as the tooth’s location, the skill of the dentist or endodontist, and the patient’s overall oral health can impact the success of the treatment. It is important to practice preventive oral care, such as brushing twice a day and flossing daily to ensure the best outcome from your root canal.
Do I need a tooth crown after a root canal?
After a root canal, it’s common for dentists to recommend a dental crown for some patients. The dentist or endodontist will recommend tooth crowns for back teeth like molars and premolars. In many cases, if the remaining tooth structure is sufficient and there are no issues with decay or fractures, then a tooth crown may not be necessary.
However, in some instances, when more than two-thirds of the natural tooth is not there due to decay or trauma, it may be best to protect that weakened tooth from further damage with a tooth crown. Ultimately, you should consult your dentist regarding their professional opinion on whether you need a crown after the root canal procedure.
Why do root canals take two visits?
The process typically takes two visits because extensive work is necessary to clear out the infection and restore the tooth. During the first visit, the dentist will remove the infected pulp, clean the root canals, and shape them to accommodate a filling material. In addition, they may temporarily seal the tooth to prevent contamination between appointments.
The second visit will involve filling the root canals that are clean with a rubber-like material and sealing the tooth with a permanent filling. In some cases, if the tooth is weak, the dentist may want to place a dental crown during a subsequent visit to provide additional strength and protection.
Request a Dental Exam Today
Call our Lancaster, CA dentists at (661) 948-6700 or schedule a dental visit to our Lancaster dentist office online.