Regular dental check-ups are a great way to detect dental problems before they cause extensive damage to the teeth or gums. At a routine check-up, your dentist will notice any signs of decay or infection and address the situation before it develops further. If tooth decay goes unnoticed, the problem will become worse and a serious infection can develop. Dr. John P. Goodman is a Kansas City cosmetic dentist who knows the importance of good oral hygiene. However, even if tooth decay has gotten out of hand, Dr. Goodman can help Kansas City patients by offering root canal therapy.
Do You Have A Root Canal Infection?
A root canal infection can occur when there are a large number of bacteria present in the mouth. Patients who have teeth with large fillings, chips, cracks, or an injury are more prone to infection, as it is easier for bacteria to enter these teeth. It may be difficult to tell if you have a root canal infection but the following symptoms can be indicators:
- Discolored tooth
- Extreme sensitivity to hot or cold
- Pain while chewing
- Swelling or tenderness of the gums
If you are experiencing any of the symptoms above, it may be a sign that an infection is present. A dental exam should be scheduled to determine if root canal therapy is required.
Root Canal Therapy
Root canal therapy can be broken down into three basic steps. The first step will be an examination to confirm that root canal therapy is required. At this exam, your dentist will check your teeth and take x-rays. If root canal therapy is needed, the second step will be cleaning the tooth. A small access hole will be drilled in your tooth. Through this hole the dentist will remove the pulp, nerves, and any debris. Root canal files will also be used to clean the full length and sides of the root canal. When this cleaning process is complete, the third step will take place. The final step of root canal therapy is the sealing of the tooth. A sealer paste and rubber compound will be used to fill the interior of the tooth. A filling will also be used to seal the exterior access hole. The tooth is sealed to prevent infection from reoccurring. As a final part of the sealing process, Dr. Goodman may suggest to his patients in Kansas City dental crowns to be placed over the affected. This will offer one further layer of protection, and provide additional strength and support, for the treated tooth.
It is important to follow your dentists’ instructions when caring for your tooth following root canal therapy. The most likely side effect of root canal treatment will be mild to moderate sensitivity or discomfort. This can be treated with over-the-counter pain medication and should only last for a few days. To avoid discomfort and give your tooth time to heal properly, you should avoid chewing on the side of your mouth that has been treated for the first few days. Root canal therapy is highly effective and once your tooth has healed, you should treat your tooth the same as the rest of the teeth in your mouth. Continue to brush and floss regularly and schedule routine cleanings with your dentist. With proper care, root canal therapy can last a lifetime.
Schedule an Appointment
Whether you suspect a root canal infection or are just looking for preventative dentistry to avoid such problems, Dr. Goodman is here to help. Schedule an appointment today.