Sometimes a tooth is so severely damaged that the only way to save it is with root canal treatment. There is no reason to turn and run if your dentist advises this procedure. The treatment has advanced to the point that it’s often compared to getting a filling. There are certain steps that will be performed as part of nearly every root canal procedure.
X-rays may be taken as part of the diagnosis process or to determine the extent of damage. Once the dentist is ready to begin treatment, a local anesthetic will be used to numb the area throughout the procedure.
A rubber dam will be placed around the tooth to separate the area from the rest of the mouth, and to keep it dry from saliva. The tooth will be opened, often using a small dental drill, to gain access to the pulp inside the tooth. The damaged pulp will be removed, and if there is an abscess it will be drained.
Cleaning and filling
After the pulp is eliminated, the dentist will thoroughly clean the area. The root canal will be widened if needed to create an adequate space for the filling. Depending on the extent of the damage, this step of the process can take up to several hours to complete or it can be spread over more than one visit. A temporary filling is sometimes used to seal the area between visits. If infection is present, the dentist may prescribe antibiotics.
The temporary filling will be removed and the permanent filling placed to fully seal the tooth and prevent future infection. If the tooth has been filled at the root, the risk of breaking is higher so a crown may be recommended for protection.
Crowns help prevent further damage or fracturing. If needed, the tooth will be reduced somewhat to allow space for the crown. It will be held in place securely with dental cement.
After root canal treatment, the tooth should survive for many years. The procedure may be repeated if re-infection occurs.
There are many misconceptions about root canal treatment. This process is recommended when your tooth pulp is infected or damaged, and the treatment is needed to save your tooth. The damaged pulp is removed from your tooth and filled with a material that prevents future infections. A crown is often recommended to be placed over the tooth to complete the procedure and preserve the tooth. If your dentist recommends this treatment for you, it may save you some worry if you know the truth about the procedure.
Truth about the pain Root canal treatment has advanced over the years, making it much less painful than its previous reputation. Anesthesia is used during the procedure, and most patients say it is no worse than getting a filling.
Truth about office visits The procedure can usually be completed in just one or two office visits. Several factors impact the number of appointments, such as the extent of infection, complexity of the procedure, and need for referral to a different health care professional. Your dentist will be able to advise how many office visits are needed for your treatment.
Truth about symptoms Your tooth does not absolutely have to be painful to indicate the need for a root canal. A dentist may diagnose a serious problem even when you don’t feel discomfort. That’s one reason regular checkups are important, so that issues can be caught.
Truth about cause It is a myth that root canal treatment is caused by illnesses like heart disease, arthritis, or kidney disease. Medical research has proven these long-time myths to be untrue.
Truth about success The benefits of root canal treatment can last a long time, even permanently. Sometimes patients experience broken teeth after treatment, but dentists attribute this to failure in the restoration or tooth construction instead of the root canal treatment itself. Patients who do not opt to get crowns tend to experience tooth breakage more often.
We treat patients from Morehead City and the surrounding area
Dental implants have been in use for more than sixty years, and over that time period, they have risen in popularity among cosmetic dentists as the top-of-the-line tooth restoration for patients with missing teeth.
Dental implants have two main components: a screw-like base and a fabricated tooth-like replacement that sits on top of the screw. Typically the screw is made from titanium and is extremely durable. The screw is surgically implanted directly into the patient’s jawbone, and over time, it fuses directly into the bone. This process is known as osseointegration and it’s the reason dental implants are so successful.
This bond with the bone allows the implant to serve as a complete replacement for the roots of a missing tooth. Dental implants can be used to anchor a single tooth, a dental bridge or even serve as one of several secure implant anchors for dentures.
The bones of the jaw thrive through the stimulation of a tooth’s natural roots. Remove the roots and the bone begins to shrink. This is the reason dentures seem to shift over time. The denture is the same shape; it’s the bones that are changing. Because dental implants mimic tooth roots in the bone, the bone remains stimulated, and continues to be healthy, providing support for surrounding tooth roots and the patient’s facial bones.
Dental implants have a very high success rate. They look very much like natural teeth. They are stable and secure and are considered by many cosmetic dentists to be the best choice for replacing one or more missing teeth.
If you are missing a tooth and you want the best restoration available, talk to the cosmetic dentist in Morehead City about dental implants. You might be surprised to learn about all the benefits dental implants can offer you to replace your missing tooth.
What you eat and drink can affect your oral health. A balanced diet will boost your body’s natural immune system, helping to lower your risks for oral problems. There are also certain foods and drinks that you should avoid in order to pave the way for healthy gums and strong teeth. Read on to learn how to ensure that your smile is safe and strong.
Cut down on snacks
Try to limit snacking between meals. The more often you eat, the more bacteria is stimulated and more acid is created. It is especially harmful to snack on sweet or starchy foods, which can harm your teeth and gums more quickly.
Limit sugar Avoid foods and drinks that are high in sugar. It can stick to your teeth and if not removed promptly and thoroughly, can lead to tooth decay.
Watch what you drink Drink plenty of water, and avoid sodas and fruit juices. Both of these can be sugary and acidic, which can harm your tooth enamel and cause decay.
Maintain a healthy diet
Try to eat a balanced diet consisting of the five major food groups. A well-balanced diet provides the vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that your teeth and gums need. Fresh vegetables and fruits, and foods rich in calcium, are good choices for your oral health.
Practice good oral hygiene Contact our Morehead City dental office to learn about good dental hygiene techniques that will help you prevent tooth decay and gum disease. Brush your teeth at least twice a day, floss daily, and see your dentist for regular checkups.
If you need a dentist in Morehead City contact us today
It’s back-to-school time and that means kids everywhere will be participating in sports. It’s time for football, soccer, volleyball, and all sorts of sports teams to get back in shape. That not only means conditioning your body, but also getting all the right gear. One item that you don’t want to forget is a mouth guard to protect yourself from mouth and facial injuries.
Dentists recommend mouth guards for participants in both high-impact sports and individual sports. Team sports often resulting in mouth injuries include football, basketball, baseball, softball, soccer, and hockey. Individual sports that carry high risks include cycling, gymnastics, skateboarding, martial arts, and rollerblading.
Mouth guards are worn to protect the mouth from a variety of possible injuries. They may be minor like a chipped or cracked tooth, or cuts from biting the inside of your mouth. Worse injuries can occur like jaw fractures, and athletes might experience tooth loss or nerve damage. Fractures can cause difficulty breathing, swallowing, eating, or speaking.
Dentists suggest that many sports injuries can be avoided by wearing a mouth guard, and they are available for athletes of all skill sets and ages. They are available in most sporting good stores, or you can opt to have customized mouth guards created by your dentist. Mouth guards are even available in a wide variety of colors, so athletes can choose them to coordinate with their school colors. They are also useful for people who wear traditional braces or Invisalign retainers.
Because many sports can be risky, there’s no reason to ignore the danger to your mouth. Wear a mouth guard to protect your smile throughout the season.
If you live in the Morehead City area contact us today