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Non-Surgical Root Canal

 

Q. What is a root canal?


A. A root canal is one of the most common dental procedures performed, with well over 14 million root canals occurring every year. This simple treatment can save your natural teeth and prevent the need for dental implants or bridges.

 

At the center of your tooth is pulp. Pulp is a collection of blood vessels that helps to build the surrounding tooth. Infection of the pulp can be caused by trauma to the tooth, deep decay, cracks and chips, or repeated dental procedures. Symptoms of the infection can be identified as visible injury or swelling of the tooth, sensitivity to temperature or pain in the tooth and gums.

 

Q. How is a root canal performed?


A. If you experience any of these symptoms, your dentist will most likely recommend non-surgical treatment to eliminate the diseased pulp. This injured pulp is removed and the root canal system is thoroughly cleaned and sealed. This therapy usually involves local anesthesia and may be completed in one or more visits depending on the treatment required. Success for this type of treatment occurs in about 90% of cases. If your tooth is not amenable to endodontic treatment or the chance of success is unfavorable, you will be informed at the time of consultation or when a complication becomes evident during or after treatment. We use local anesthesia to eliminate discomfort. In addition, we will provide nitrous oxide analgesia if indicated. You will be able to drive home after your treatment, and you will probably be comfortable returning to your normal routine.

 

Q. What happens after treatment?


A. When your root canal therapy has been completed, a second appointment will be scheduled to restore the tooth to complete function. Dr. Weimar will decide what type of restoration is necessary to protect your tooth. It is rare for endodontic patients to experience complications after routine endodontic treatment or microsurgery. If a problem does occur, however, we are available at all times to respond. To prevent further decay, continue to practice good dental hygiene.

 

Q. How much will it cost?


A. The cost associated with this procedure can vary depending on factors such as the severity of damage to the affected tooth and which tooth is affected. In general, endodontic treatment is much less expensive than tooth removal and replacement with an artificial tooth.

 

Periodontal Maintenance

Periodontal diseases are infections of the gums that gradually destroy the support of your natural teeth. There are numerous disease entities requiring different treatment approaches. Dental plaque is the primary cause of gum disease in genetically susceptible individuals. Daily brushing and flossing will prevent most periodontal conditions.

 

Q. Why is oral hygiene so important?


A. Adults over 35 lose more teeth to gum diseases (periodontal disease) than from cavities. Three out of four adults are affected at some time in their life. The best way to prevent cavities and periodontal disease is through good tooth brushing and flossing techniques, performed daily.

 

Periodontal disease and decay are both caused by bacterial plaque. Plaque is a colorless film that sticks to your teeth at the gum line. Plaque constantly forms on your teeth. With thorough daily brushing and flossing, you can remove these germs and help prevent periodontal disease.

 

Periodontal diseases can be accelerated by a number of different factors. However, it is mainly caused by the bacteria found in dental plaque, a sticky colorless film that constantly forms on your teeth. If not carefully removed by daily brushing and flossing, plaque hardens into a rough, porous substance known as calculus (or tartar).

 

Other important factors affecting the health of your gums include:

  • Smoking
  • Diabetes
  • Stress
  • Clenching and grinding teeth
  • Medication
  • Poor nutrition
  • Periodontal disease

Bacteria found in plaque produces toxins or poisons that irritate the gums, which may cause them to turn red, swell and bleed easily. If this irritation is prolonged, the gums separate from the teeth, causing pockets (spaces) to form. As periodontal diseases progress, the supporting gum tissue and bone that holds teeth in place deteriorate. If left untreated, this leads to tooth loss.

 

Preventing gum disease

The best way to prevent gum disease is via effective daily brushing and flossing as well as regular professional examinations and cleanings. Unfortunately, even with the most diligent home dental care, people still can develop some form of periodontal disease. Once this disease starts, professional intervention is necessary to prevent its progress.

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