Root Canals, also know as endodontic therapy, are a way to fix teeth that have been severely decayed or broken, and allow them to function painlessly. Root canals have a success rate of near 90%, and are a great way to keep your natural teeth. At Canyon Dental in Orem, Utah, Dr. Bowen provides comfortable and efficient root canals.
As decay gets larger in a tooth, it eventually gets to the nerve, which is what causes pain in teeth. The nerve becomes infected from the bacteria in the decay, and eventually dies. The now-dead nerve swells, and since teeth are rigid and have no place for the swelling to go, pressure builds up inside and causes tooth pain.
The procedure for a root canal starts out by using topical numbing gel and a local anesthetic to numb your tooth. If a tooth is heavily infected, it may require antibiotics prior to initiating the root canal to control the infection.
When your tooth is numb, your tooth is isolated to prevent saliva and additional bacteria from your mouth to enter your tooth. Dr. Bowen makes a small opening in the top of your tooth to gain access to the pulp and the tooth roots. Using specialized endodontic rotary files, the infection is cleaning out, and an antimicrobial rinse is placed in the tooth to remove as much bacteria as possible. The root canals are then dried, and a permanent filling, called Gutta Percha, is placed with sealer to ensure the canals are sealed from the bottom of the tooth.
Following your root canal, a filling will be placed to seal your tooth from the top. If a posterior tooth requires a root canal, it will also need a crown to preserve its strength. A crown is typically done at the same appointment as your root canal, unless extenuating circumstances, like a large infection, prevent that.
Following your root canal, you may experience discomfort and tenderness within and around the tooth that was treated. This is normal, and should not be a cause for alarm. Over-the-counter pain medication like Ibuprofen and Tylenol should be sufficient to control the pain. This discomfort may last for up to one week following your procedure, and may last longer, depending on the condition of the tooth and treatment performed.
If you have any questions or concerns, or need to schedule an appointment for a root canal, please call our office (801) 224-6051 or click here!