Root canals and Endodontic Therapy at Smile Design Dentistry in Plymouth MN
If you need a Root Canal, you want someone who can clean the canal as pain fee as possible and improve its appearance with a successful root canal procedure.
So you need a root canal, but are you feeling overwhelmed with what is involved in the procedure or don’t fully understand what is being recommended? At Smile Design Dentistry we want to ensure you completely understand your dental treatment needs and procedures that are to be performed. We also understand that while you are in the dental office and have a large volume of information presented, that not all aspects of what was explained are retained. Our hope is that reading through this overview will help you understand better the treatment presented.
What is a Root Canal?
Simply put, a root canal is the removal of the nerve and blood vessel tissues from the inside of the tooth. Through a series of small instruments, we remove all internal tissues from the tooth and create space for a putty like filling material (gutta percha) to fill the void we have created.
What is Endodontic Therapy?
Endodontic therapy is the dental procedure that treats the nerves of your teeth when needed, typically known as a root canal. This dental treatment can preserve your natural teeth, preventing extraction and the need for dental implants or bridges.
What will the root canal be filled with?
The root canal is filled with a material called gutta percha, a tree derived material that is rubber-like in its consistency. This will be placed into each of the canals. After that is completed, the tooth itself will require a dental restoration. If it is a front tooth, typically this requires a filling on the tongue side of the tooth. If it is a back tooth, a build-up of the missing tooth structure and a crown are required. A root canal removes all internal hydration to the tooth inherently. This dries out a tooth and consequently makes it very brittle, for a back tooth this means there is a high risk of fracture for the tooth. This could result in loss of the tooth after all the time and money that has been invested by you. For this reason, we recommend not delaying protecting the tooth.
What is the reason for the root canal?
Root canals are done for many different reasons, the most common being that you have a toothache that cannot be otherwise addressed. This toothache can arise from a big cavity, a deep filling or crown preparation, a crack, a trauma to the tooth (biting into something hard or a collision that hurts the tooth) along with a wide array of other reasons. But the end result is you have a tooth that has either died or become very painful. Once this happens, the options to address the issue are limited. This usually involves either a root canal or removal of the tooth. Depending on your specific case, the Doctors at Smile Design Dentistry will recommend a particular course of action.
How long does a root canal take?
The length of the appointment depends mostly on the number of roots on a particular tooth. This can vary from 1 to 4 or more. If a root has narrowed with age significantly or has a large curve, these things can also impact the length of an appointment. In some cases, we will make the decision to break the work into two appointments. This may be needed to increase the success rate by decreasing bacteria in the canals, to get immediate pain relief and then allow the appropriate time to finish, or to assess the tooth response further. Again, we hope to communicate to you the needs in your mouth accurately and make every effort to respect your time as we try to provide the best clinical outcome possible.
How successful are root canals?
Root canals have been shown to be highly successful. Around 86% of root canals are successful, but individual circumstances can change the long-term outcomes and predictability. We try to be upfront with the prognosis in your particular tooth and if circumstances arrive where this needs to be adjusted, to communicate that to you. Situations such as fractures, the amount of remaining natural tooth, inaccessible canals along with other case-specific findings all factor into the equation. Please feel free to ask questions about your specific scenario to any of our Doctors.
What else should I know about root canals?
Root canals are a highly predictable and successful treatment in many situations, but not all. On the day of your root canal the doctor will sit with you to discuss your particular case and risks and complications that may arise.
If you have concerns that have not been addressed please feel free to contact us and we would be happy to explain things further or answer any specific questions you may have.