An endodontist can literally save teeth from extraction by treating the inside of teeth. Endodontic care, also called “root canal therapy”, treats infections that develop deep within teeth. After receiving this type of oral health procedure, patients should avoid eating until the numbness associated with local anesthetics completely wears off. Numbness associated with anesthetics can lead to biting down on the treated tooth and soft oral tissue – which can cause injury. The day of and the day following treatment, patients should avoid biting down on the treated tooth. One way to avoid biting down on treated teeth is to adopt a soft diet by consuming smoothies and soups temporarily. Following are answers to frequent questions patients ask our staff about endodontics.
What is the root canal?
The root canal is a part of a tooth’s internal anatomy. Deep within a tooth is a chambered area that contains the nerve endings and dental pulp of a tooth. The nerves and pulp are necessary for tooth development but after teeth are done developing, this tissue is not necessary to maintain oral function or the vitality of a tooth.
I have a toothache; is my root canal infected?
Many times, a toothache is a good indicator that a tooth is diseased and in need of professional treatment. Sometimes, a toothache can be treated with a minor restoration like a filling. In other cases, root canal therapy is necessary to remove infected material inside the tooth.
What happens if I forego endodontic care?
If your dentist recommends that you see a specialist for treatment such as root canal therapy, it is important that you act quickly. Foregoing root canal treatment could result in the loss of your tooth. This is because teeth cannot self-heal. Without treatment, an infection can worsen to the point of the development of an abscess.
Is root canal treatment comfortable?
Our endodontist uses local anesthetics and nitrous oxide (and in some cases prescription medication) to maintain a person’s comfort during treatment. Because of medication and the gentle techniques used, our patients report positive experiences during and after treatment.
If you have been referred to our practice, call us today to reserve an appointment.