At Every Smile Chandler we want to make sure your teeth are always healthy and beautiful. If you suffer from extreme tooth pain, especially when you chew or bite down, or if your tooth is extremely sensitive to hot or cold temperatures you may suffer from an infected tooth.
When decay or injury reaches deep into the tooth, past the outer enamel layer, it can result in a serious infection that causes intense pain and sensitivity. In these cases, it is important to treat the tooth in a timely manner to prevent the need for tooth extraction. If your tooth is infected, our knowledgeable dentists may recommend a treatment called root canal treatment.
What is a Root Canal Procedure?
If a tooth is damaged, or decayed past the enamel into the dentin, a root canal procedure is necessary to prevent tooth loss, or infection. The term “root canal” refers to the inner tunnels of your tooth’s root, and a root canal procedure is the two part process we use to restore the tooth, while alleviating pain and the risk of future infection. During this treatment, we remove the infected tissues, specifically the dental pulp and tooth nerves, from the tooth. We carefully clean the tooth, fill it in with a medicated material, and seal the tooth with a dental crown or filling to restore its structure and health.
What Happens During A Root Canal Procedure?
During a root canal procedure, the first step is to access, clean, and close off the tunnels of the tooth’s canal structure. After applying a local anesthetic to numb your tooth, Dr. Lee or Dr. Proctor will use a laser to make a small access hole, providing a point of entry. The pulp inside the canals is taken out, and then the narrow canals are cleaned, shaped, and disinfected to prevent any bacteria from remaining in the tooth. Once the roots are empty and cleaned, they can be filled with a rubber-like substance called gutta-percha, to seal them off from bacteria and future reinfection.
During the second part of a root canal procedure, a permanent restoration is made for the tooth’s crown. If enough of the enamel remains, a filling is always a more conservative restoration. If too much of the enamel is gone, an artificial crown will be used, which will attach directly to the filled roots. In many cases, if a crown is needed we provide you with a temporary crown while the permanent crown is being made.
After Your Procedure
You may experience some soreness around the affected tooth, which is a natural and is a part of the healing process. This can usually be controlled by over-the-counter pain medications, such as ibuprofen. You may also experience some soreness in your jaw, from keeping your mouth open for the duration of the procedure, which is also normal.
- Do not eat or chew while you are still numb—you may bite your cheek or tongue accidentally.
- Take prescriptions as directed; call our office if you have questions about their purpose.
- Resume your brushing routine right away.
- Be gentle with your temporary crown, if you have one. It is normal for a layer of the temporary material to come off between visits; only call Dr. Lee if you believe you have lost the whole temporary crown. Call us if you have any severe swelling, your bite feels uneven, or you experience your original symptoms again. If you experience a fever or allergic reaction call us right away.
While root canal treatment has a reputation for being a painful procedure, you can rest assured that our doctors at Every Smile will do all we can to ensure that your root canal in Chandler, Arizona, is as comfortable and painless as possible. To learn more about how root canal treatment can improve your oral health, we welcome you to call our Chandler, Arizona office today at (480) 732-7874, or request an appointment online.