Posts for tag: Root Canal
Remembered fondly by fans as the wacky but loveable Carlton on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Alfonso Ribeiro is currently in his fifth year hosting America's Funniest Videos. It's the perfect gig for the 48-year-old actor, who loves to laugh and make others laugh as well. This is quite the opposite experience from one he had a few years ago that he remembers all too well: a severely decayed tooth.
After seeing his dentist for an intense toothache, Ribeiro learned he had advanced tooth decay and would need root canal treatment. Ribeiro wasn't thrilled by the news. Like many of us, he thought the procedure would be unpleasant. But he found afterward that not only was the root canal painless, his toothache had vanished.
More importantly, the root canal treatment saved his tooth, as it has for millions of others over the last century. If you're facing a situation similar to Alfonso Ribeiro's, here's a quick look at the procedure that could rescue your endangered tooth.
Getting ready. In preparation for root canal therapy, the tooth and surrounding gums are numbed, often first with a swab of local anesthesia to deaden the surface area in preparation for the injection of the main anesthesia below the surface. A dental dam is then placed to isolate the infected tooth from its neighbors to prevent cross-contamination.
Accessing the interior. To get to the infection, a small access hole is drilled. The location depends on the tooth: in larger back teeth, a hole is drilled through the biting surface, and in front teeth, a hole is drilled on the backside. This access allows us to insert special tools to accomplish the next steps in the procedure.
Cleaning, shaping and filling. Small tools are used to remove the diseased tissue from the interior tooth pulp and root canals. Then the empty spaces are disinfected. This, in effect, stops the infection. Next, the root canals inside the tooth are shaped to allow them to better accept a special filling called gutta percha. The access hole is then sealed to further protect the tooth from future infection, and a temporary crown is placed.
A new crown to boot. Within a couple weeks, we'll cap the tooth with a long-lasting lifelike crown (or a filling on certain teeth). This adds further protection for the tooth against infection, helps strengthen the tooth's structure, and restores the tooth's appearance.
Without this procedure, the chances of a tooth surviving this level of advanced decay are very slim. But undergoing a root canal, as Alfonso Ribeiro did, can give your tooth a real fighting chance.
If you would like more information about root canal treatments, please contact us or schedule a consultation. To learn more, read the Dear Doctor magazine articles “A Step-By-Step Guide to Root Canal Treatment” and “Root Canal Treatment: How Long Will It Last?”
A root canal might be needed if you are struggling with a severe and persistent toothache or experience pain or sensitivity when eating. A root canal is a procedure for removing infected pulp from the interior of a tooth and its root. If left untreated, the tooth can become so compromised that extraction is required. A root canal strengthens and restores an infected tooth and saves it from being extracted. In Braintree, MA, the dentists at Dr. George Salem and Associates can advise you if a root canal is needed.
Root canals make it possible to save damaged or infected teeth from extraction. Root canals also stop the infection from spreading to other areas of the mouth. During the root canal procedure, infection is removed and the affected tooth is strengthened and restored. Several symptoms can be signs you may need a root canal. Your Braintree dentist can determine if a root canal is needed in your case. The following symptoms are signs you may need a root canal:
- Severe and persistent toothache
- Persistent mouth pain or pressure
- Sharp pain when biting or chewing food
- Tooth sensitivity when consuming hot and cold foods or beverages
Root Canal Procedure
A root canal procedure is similar to that of having a cavity filled. The dentist first drills into the affected tooth and removes all the infected pulp from inside the tooth and root. After the infected pulp has been removed, the interior of the tooth and root is thoroughly cleaned out. The tooth and root are then filled in and sealed with a dental filling, which strengthens and restores the tooth, as well as prevents further infection. In some cases, a dental crown is placed over the tooth for additional strength and protection.
Benefits of Root Canals
Root canals offer multiple benefits. Not only do they save damaged and infected teeth from extraction, but they fully restore those teeth, as well. The benefits of root canals include:
- Preventing extraction
- Preserving the natural teeth
- Strengthening and restoring teeth
- Alleviating tooth pain and sensitivity
- Preventing the spread of infection
There are several symptoms that can be an indication you need a root canal. See a dentist if you have a severe and persistent toothache, mouth pain, or are experiencing persistent tooth sensitivity. To find out if you need a root canal, schedule an appointment at Dr. George Salem and Associates, your Braintree, MA, dentists, by calling the office at (781) 843-0660.