Root canal therapy is needed because the nerve of your tooth has been affected by decay, infection and/or trauma. In order to save your tooth, the pulp (the living tissue inside the tooth), nerves, bacteria, and any decay need to be removed and the resulting space filled with special, medicated, dental materials, which will restore your tooth to its full function.
Having a root canal done on your tooth is the treatment of choice to save it, otherwise will need to be removed. Many patients believe that extracting a tooth that has problems is a good solution, but what is not realized is that such actions will ultimately be more costly and cause significant problems for adjacent teeth.
Root canal treatment is highly successful and usually lasts a long time, although on occasion a tooth will have to be retreated due to new infections or occasionally is lost.. Dr, Hutton will discuss with the the likely hood of these untoward events.
Frequently teeth like yours that are being prepared for crowns or fixed bridges have one or more causes of inner tooth damage and therefore need a root canal treatment to be successfully restored..
What does an endodontic procedure involve?
Root canal therapy usually takes between two or three visits to complete. In our office your first visit likely takes place as part of your tooth preparation for a crown or fixed bridge. Initially local anesthetic will be administered. The crown prep, impression and temporary crown will be completed. Before cementing the temporary crown any remaining decay and the bulk of the dental pulp will be removed. A therapeutic dressing will be applied and sealed in place with the temporary crown. You should have little or no discomfort during and after this visit. You will be offered an over the contour pain med.
Usually one week later, again with local anesthetic the temporary crown will be removed and the canal(s) will be shaped, cleaned, and filled. The tooth will be sealed and the temporary replaced to restore functionality. Again you should expect little or no discomfort during and after this visit. As before you will be offered an over the contour pain med. .
After allowing for healing (usually 2-3 weeks) a final visit will occur during which your definitive restoration or crown will be placed.
Most teeth requiring a root canal procedure can be successfully treated in our office without referral to an endodontist. However if you wish to be referred or if in your consultation with Dr. Hutton it appears that your tooth presents unique challenges then such a referral will be recommended.
If you have questions or concerns about endodontic procedures and how the interface with crowns or other prostodontic restorations, please contact our office.