Root canal (or endodontic therapy) is a routine and common dental procedure and Dr Di Giulio, a Bend family and cosmetic dentist, is highly trained and competent in performing endodontic treatments.Root canal is performed in order to save, rather than pulling, a severely damaged or infected tooth. Modern dentistry’s goal is to try to save all of our natural teeth rather than pulling them and replacing the missing teeth with dentures.
There are canals or chambers inside the tooth that house the tooth’s nerve. When a tooth is damaged by trauma or decay, the root breaks down and bacteria begin to invade the canal space. The bacteria begin to multiply, causing swelling and discomfort, and it is this pain that often brings patients into the dental office for evaluation. Without adequate treatment the infection can spread beyond the tooth into the surrounding tissue, gum and bone and cause a dental emergency.Not As painful as You Think
A root canal is a procedure that not only removes the bacteria and infection, but the damaged nerve from the tooth’s structure. An adult tooth can survive long term with out a nerve. The nerve is essential to eruption, but once a tooth is in place the nerve functions only for sensation. The procedure: the dentist will open the canal, remove the infection and damaged nerve, and then seal the canal. Once sealed, the tooth will be both infection and pain free.
How do I know if I need a root canal?
Only a competent and well trained dentist can make that call but the symptoms you may experience are:
1. Severe tooth ache, especially with chewing or when pressure is applied to the tooth. Tap on your tooth with the end of your toothbrush and if this causes an increase in pain, you might need a root canal.
2. Tooth discoloration usually to a brownish grey color
3. Swelling near the gums
4. Drainage from the tooth or the development of a ” pimple” on the gum tissue.Call 514-389-2885 today
Root Canal and Pain?
There is no question that root canal is a feared dental procedure, but modern dental techniques and materials have significantly reduced the discomfort associated with root canal. Smaller caliber needles and high speed rotatory equipment have also significantly reduced the time necessary to complete the operation. Dr Di Giulio can often complete a root canal in one visit which reduces pain and discomfort and time spent in the dental chair.
Another reason why root canal is associated with pain and discomfort is that dental anesthesia (Novocaine) requires a basic environment to work and infection creates an acidic one. The acidity reduces the efficacy of the anesthesia and Dr Di Giulio will often prescribe an antibiotic prior to the root canal in order to improve your comfort level.
What Should I Expect After the Procedure?
Your tooth may be sensitive for the first few days after the root canal primarily due to the swelling and inflammation associated with the infection ( yes, the infection is gone, but the inflammation can take a few days to resolve) The discomfort is managed with pain medications, especially the anti-inflammatory class like ibuprofen. Most patients are back to normal in 24-48 hours. Avoid chewing on the affected side and maintain normal oral hygiene with brushing and flossing.
Are Root Canals Successful?
Root canal treatment is very successful; the procedure has more than a 95% success rate. Many teeth fixed with a root canal can last a lifetime.
If you are experiencing pain or any of the symptoms already mentioned, call Dr Di Giulio @ 541-389-2885 and schedule an evaluation.