John Cutting, DMD performs all root canal procedures in his Edgewater dental office. If you are experiencing tooth pain or think you need a root canal, please contact Edgewater Dental Arts to schedule an appointment. Root canal therapy will remove infected tissues deep inside the tooth and keep the natural structure of your tooth fully intact. At Edgewater Dental Arts, we believe that there is nothing better than the teeth you were born with, and we do all we can to keep them!
About the Root Canal Procedure
Dr. Cutting can complete most root canals in a single visit to his Edgewater dental office. There are two main parts of the procedure: first to remove infected tissue from inside the root canal and second to fill and cover the tooth to prevent future infection or damage.
Dr. Cutting will make a small hole in the tooth to access the tooth pulp inside the root canal. If an infection is present, he may prescribe antibiotics and temporarily seal the tooth until the infection is healed.
The inside of the tooth will be filled with a biocompatible rubber compound called gutta percha. Dr. Cutting may use a dental crown, inlay or onlay to restore the tooth and prevent future problems. If you are planning for a root canal, read our blog post about what to expect after your procedure.
Root Canal vs. Tooth Extraction
In some cases, tooth pain may be so severe, that the patient thinks a tooth extraction is the best solution. In most cases, it is in the best interest of the patient to preserve the natural tooth. A root canal procedure can remove infected tissue and eliminate tooth pain, allowing the patient to keep their tooth.
If Dr. Cutting recommends a tooth extraction, that can also be performed in his Edgewater dental office. Dr. Cutting can replace the tooth with either a dental implant or dental bridge to restore proper chewing function and aesthetics. To learn more about your options when experiencing severe tooth pain, read our blog on root canals vs tooth extractions.
Root Canal FAQs
Are root canals painful?
One of the most common questions we get about root canals is whether or not the procedure will hurt. While the procedure is not entirely pain free, Dr. Cutting will use techniques such as sedation dentistry to minimize pain during the procedure.
Most of the pain associated with a root canal is due to pressure caused by an infection inside the tooth. Root canal therapy relieves tooth pain by removing infection and healing the root canal.
How much does a root canal cost?
The cost of root canal therapy will depend on your specific circumstances. Factors that go into the cost of a root canal include the size and location of the tooth. In most cases, a tooth will be restored using a dental crown. Dr. Cutting can offer a variety of materials for dental crowns and this will be factored into the total cost of root canal therapy.
Some dental insurance providers will pay for all or part of the cost of root canal therapy. At Edgewater Dental Arts, we will file dental insurance claims on your behalf to help you maximize your benefits.
How do you know if you need a root canal?
A root canal is performed to remove infected pulp and soft tissues deep inside a tooth. Root canal infection symptoms are:
- Severe sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures
- Pain in tooth upon chewing or with pressure
- Darkening of the tooth
- Swelling in the gums around the tooth
What causes a root canal?
A root canal is actually the treatment for an infected tooth. What causes a tooth to become infected is when bacteria are able to penetrate the enamel into the soft tissues deep inside the tooth. A cracked tooth, bad filling, or severe decay could allow the bacteria to reach the pulp.
Can antibiotics be used to make an abscess go away instead of a root canal?
When a tooth is infected, the blood supply (pulp) running through the tooth is affected as well. There is no way to get antibiotics to the needed area. This makes a root canal necessary to help treat the infected pulp. However, antibiotics will be used to assist in controlling and eliminating infection in the surrounding bone before and after root canal therapy.
How long does a root canal take?
The amount of time a procedure takes depends on the tooth involved and your oral health. Most root canal procedures in our office approximately take 1 to 2 hours.
When can I eat after getting a root canal?
Before your root canal treatment begins, our team will use a local anesthetic to completely numb your teeth and gums. We recommend waiting until the numbness wears off after your treatment to eat anything to avoid accidentally biting your tongue or the inside of your cheek. After that, our advice is to stick with soft foods for a few days and chew with the other side of your mouth if possible to give the tooth a break and let the temporary crown settle on the tooth.
How can I avoid needing a root canal?
Since tooth infections often occur because harmful bacteria was able to make its way inside the tooth, we advise patients to stay on top of their oral health care and schedule restorative treatments as soon as possible. If you have a chipped, cracked, or broken tooth, you will want to visit our office sooner rather than later to reduce your chances of needing a root canal treatment.
It’s also a good idea to visit our office on a biannual basis even if you take great care of your smile at home so our team can identify potential issues and treat them right away.
What happens if I don’t get a root canal?
Patients are sometimes tempted to put off root canal therapy because they are intimidated by the procedure and want to avoid it. When a tooth is infected, however, it’s important to take care of it before the infection begins to spread to other parts of the face and body and becomes much more serious and difficult to treat. If a root canal is avoided for too long, a dental extraction may become necessary to take care of the problem, which is more invasive, and then a tooth replacement method will need to be chosen and scheduled.