One of the biggest sources of fear is the unknown. When you’re not exactly sure what to expect in situation, your mind can start racing with frightening possibilities. This is all too true when it comes to root canals. Rather than having a dental professional walk them through the routine procedure, many patients focus on negative portrayals of the procedure they may have come across on a TV show or in a movie, or they just assume that it’ll be painful because of what they’ve heard from a friend of a friend.
We believe that when you better understand how the root canal process works and how it can benefit you, it’ll help alleviate some of your anxiety about the treatment. The truth of the matter is that the consequences of avoiding a root canal when you need it are much scarier than the procedure itself!
Every patient case is unique, so it’s important to have a precise, personalized treatment plan before beginning the procedure. Your dentist will take X-rays to see just how bad the damage is and where exactly it’s located. Once they’re ready to begin the root canal, they’ll use local anesthetic in the treatment area so you don’t feel pain. They will also put a dental dam (a rubber-like sheet) in your mouth to make sure the area stays clean.
The Actual Procedure
Your dentist will make a small opening through the crown of your tooth (the top part) so they can access the pulp chamber and root canals. Through this hole, they’ll remove any infected or diseased pulp. Once all of that is gone, they’ll clean out the chamber and root canals and reshape them if necessary. In the final step, they’ll fill the inside of your tooth using a rubber compound and then place a restoration. This restoration helps the weakened tooth get back to full strength and function. Oftentimes, it is a dental crown.
The After Care Steps
After your procedure is complete, you dentist will give you a list of guidelines to follow to ensure that your tooth heals as quickly as possible. For example, you shouldn’t chew or drink until the numbness has worn off, and you can take over-the-counter pain medications to manage any of the temporary discomfort.
If you have other questions about the root canal process, we’re happy to answer them for you.
Contact our office today to learn more or to make an appointment!