The word root canal often conjures up images of painful oral surgery and extractions, but the reality is far less scary. At his practice in Cypress, Texas, expert dentist Robert W. Kleypas, DDS, regularly performs root canals to preserve his patient’s permanent teeth. If you suspect you need a root canal, call or use online booking to make an appointment today.
A root canal is a type of oral surgery that’s designed to remove infected or inflamed tooth pulp.
Beneath the hard enamel surface of each tooth is a natural cavity called the “root canal.” Each root canal contains nerves and pulp that provide sensory sensations to your mouth whenever you eat and drink.
If you crack or chip a tooth bacteria can break through your enamel and make their way into your pulp chamber.
The warm, moist conditions of your mouth allow the bacteria to thrive, causing them to multiply and develop into an abscess. Left untreated, an abscess in the root canal of your tooth can cause:
In severe cases, infected tooth pulp can cause an open wound or ulcer to form on your jaw or cheek.
Many patients think root canals are incredibly painful and time-consuming, but thanks to modern surgical techniques and sedation dentistry, the process is quick and almost entirely pain-free.
First, it’s important to know that root canals require two separate visits. During your first appointment, your dentist takes an X-ray of your teeth and gums to look for signs of infection. If inflammation is present, they recommend a root canal and schedule your second appointment.
At your second appointment, your dentist applies a topical anesthetic like Novacaine to numb your gums and affected tooth.
After the anesthesia sets in, your dentist applies a rubber dam to the affected tooth so the surgical site remains dry during the procedure. Next, they drill a small hole in your tooth and carefully remove any infected pulp, bacteria, and debris.
Lastly, your dentist seals your root canal with gutta-percha, a rubber-like substance that’s used to prevent further infection. Your dentist then bonds a crown to your tooth, preserving its strength and appearance.
After your root canal is complete, your dentist provides you with a list of recovery instructions. Make sure to take your pain medication as prescribed and avoiding biting down on or chewing with the affected tooth.
It’s perfectly normal to experience some swelling, irritation, and general discomfort. However, your symptoms should improve within a week’s time.
If you want to see whether or not you’re a candidate for a root canal call or use the online booking tool to make an appointment today.