You’ve known for some time that you have worsening tooth decay but have failed to act on it. Now you’re beginning to experience painful sensations that shoot out from the tooth when you bite down into certain foods, which has really garnered your attention. You’re ready to finally get some help for your tooth, but is it too late for a simple cavity filling? Your local dentist says you may be in need of root canal therapy in Dublin, and as you read along, you’ll discover why and how the process works.
What is a Root Canal?
A root canal is a procedure used to restore a tooth that has suffered advanced decay. Situations like this can’t be addressed with a simple tooth filling because the decay has travelled beneath the enamel, through the dentin and into the inner area. Evidence that this has happened is the pain sensation that you’ve been feeling.
The enamel has no nerves, so you don’t feel the results of decay in that area. Therefore, once you start to notice any discomfort related to tooth decay, you can rest assured that it has at least entered the dentin, the first layer where any nerves are present.
How Does a Root Canal Work?
The steps for getting a fully restored tooth are simple and include:
- X-rays – Before starting the procedure, your dentist will capture X-ray images of your teeth to be sure that you need a root canal.
- Anesthesia – He will then administer anesthesia to numb the area where the work will be done, and with modern techniques, patients can feel confident that the discomfort will be no worse than if receiving a filling.
- Pulpectomy – The first step of the procedure is for your dentist to make an incision into the affected tooth to gain access to the decayed tissue. He’ll remove it and thoroughly clean the area.
- Filling – The final step is to fill the vacated space with a material called gutta-percha and then seal the tooth with a special type of cement.
After the procedure is done, your dentist will take measurements for you to be fitted with a permanent crown, which will be fabricated at a trusted lab. When it’s ready, you’ll return to your dentist to have it placed, and you’ll leave with a fully restored tooth!
Tips for Preventing Future Tooth Decay
The culprits of all tooth decay are bacteria, but ironically, we can’t live without them. However, we can prevent them from harming our teeth and gums through the following methods:
- Food – Eating a diet with more fruits and vegetables helps to create a healthier environment inside your mouth and limits bacteria growth.
- Oral Hygiene – Your willingness to practice excellent oral hygiene is very important because it cleans away leftover food particles that bacteria love to cling to. The two main practices that should be part of your regimen are toothbrushing and flossing at least two times a day.
- Semi-Annual Visits – Your six-month appointment with your dentist in Dublin will also provide you with clean teeth, where built-up plaque and tartar are removed. Additionally, you’ll receive a thorough examination to check for any oral problems like developing cavities, signs of gum disease and other issues.
By taking these simple steps, you won’t have to endure another root canal procedure and your mouth, teeth and gums will remain healthy for years to come.
About the Author
A proud graduate of The Ohio State University College of Dentistry, Dr. Jason Buck is passionate about helping his patients reach their goals and experience the best in oral health. He delivers expert care at Distinctive Smiles of Dublin and can be reached for more information through his website.