What Is An Endodontic Treatment?
Endodontic treatment or more popularly known as root canal treatment is a dental procedure used to save your natural teeth from extraction. It’s a less invasive treatment and costs much less than a dental implant or a dental bridge. This is done when the tissues below the tooth could develop an infection and if there’s a large cavity existing that could potentially contaminate the inside of the tooth as well. The treatment can eliminate those bacteria from the infected root canal and the potential reinfection of the tooth.
The root canal is found at the central part of the tooth. It holds the dental pulp and consists of nerves, blood vessels, and other tissues. This pulp is essential for a child’s tooth development and is responsible for the sensation we feel in our teeth. However, it loses its significant use as we grow older. When we reach our adulthood, our teeth stop growing. That’s when the pulp begins to diminish in size. If this pulp is infected and becomes painful and inflamed refers to as pulpitis and requires a procedure known as Root Canal Therapy.
There are common causes of pulp infection which include:
- Deep cavities that can reach the pulp area
- Cracks on a tooth, exposing the pulp
- Undergoing dental treatments that have side effects
- Traumatic injury
Failing to treat a pulp infection poses a risk of contamination across the rest of healthy teeth, causing the need for tooth extraction and other dental emergencies. That’s why going through an endodontic treatment can prevent further damage, thus, maintain the quality of your smile. Removing the pulp, cleaning the cavity and sealing it can save your tooth.
Why Is It Needed?
A cracked tooth, damaged fillings, injuries, and deep cavities cause inflammation. This is why it’s quite common to experience a throbbing toothache when root canals get too inflamed. Since this inflammation can cut the blood supply, it can lead to unhealed tissue, allowing bacteria to brew infections. If left untreated, tooth extraction is the only option.
As we all know, maintaining our natural teeth comes with many advantages. They allow us to eat all kinds of foods that are essential to nourish our bodies. No artificial tooth can come close to what advantages our natural teeth bring. However, if the worst case happens, we can provide replacement with a bridge, implant, or a partial removable denture to help in restoring your chewing function and to prevent adjacent teeth from misaligning. These alternatives require more additional procedures and are more costly.
In addition to that, endodontic treatment has restrictions. For instance, if you have a cracked tooth that has developed cavity beyond the pulp chamber floor, the tooth cannot be saved by the treatment and requires extraction. So, it’s best to regularly visit an affordable dentist in Gold Coast.
Signs You Might Need A Endodontic Treatment
As mentioned, undergoing an endodontic treatment can save your existing tooth from extraction which preserves the quality of smile you currently have. However, opting for early treatment can save you from pain and discomfort which can include:
- Hypersensitivity of teeth to hot and cold beverage and food
- Painful chewing or biting
- Sudden toothache while doing normal day to day activities
- Discolouration or darkening of the tooth
- Bad breath
- Severe and throbbing tooth pain
- Unbearable tooth pain caused by abrupt pressure changes of your environment (elevator ride, flying, scuba diving, etc)
- Swelling that can extend and affect the face’s appearance
- Inflammation and tenderness of nearby gums
- Recurring development of gum pimp
The above mentioned signs are usually caused by a dental pulp disease. However, it’s not always the case. That’s why we highly encourage everyone to consult a dentist to receive proper assessment and diagnosis. Prolonging treatment because you think ‘it will go away’ is the very thing that leads to tooth extraction. Since the disappearing pain often means the bacteria build-up has already killed the tooth’s nerves, hence calls for losing your tooth.
So, if you’re experiencing any of the mentioned symptoms, visit Artsmiles. We are a team of reliable yet affordable dentists in Gold Coast to make sure everybody receives the best treatment.
What To Expect During This Treatment
It’s natural to get nervous when you’re considering an unfamiliar treatment. However, with our friendly and warm staff, we will ensure your comfort and understanding. To have a better idea of what we do, here’s a quick walk-through of the procedure:
- Gathering necessary information
Your endodontic treatment will start by giving us the necessary information to guarantee a successful procedure. A medical and dental history form has to be filled out with details of the current symptoms you are experiencing. This way, we can have a fuller understanding of your situation, allowing us to provide the best treatment possible. Some of the information we need to know are as follows:
- Any medical conditions or a nervous system problems
- What medication you are currently taking
Apart from that, we will conduct digital x-rays to have an assessment of your tooth, gums, and bite. A few more simple tests will also be performed to accurately measure the intensity of infection and inflammation of the affected tooth and those next to it. Our findings during this step will determine if endodontic treatment is deemed the solution.
- Preparing for your treatment
Some may be afraid of pain however with modern innovations such as anesthesia along with the latest dental technologies; this procedure is pain-less as possible. Aside from administering anesthesia on your gums and around the root of the tooth, we will put a small protective sheet called a “dental dam”. This is used to keep the tooth isolated, clean and free of saliva during the treatment.
- Identify if there’s a possible pulp space
During this step, we will create a small opening on the crown of the tooth. This needs extreme care to make sure that only a minimal amount of tooth structure will be removed. This leads us to access the pulp and with our cutting-edge tools, we can accurately identify the pulp space and the root canals.
- The pulp space will be cleaned
We are equipped with the latest technologies including small specialised instruments that are used to disinfect the pulp from the chamber and root canals. This step also involves shaping the space for the filling and irrigating the anti-infection fluids to the root canals. This way, bacteria are eliminated and all debris will be rinsed out.
- Setting the seal and restoration of the tooth
This involves a special biocompatible material that fills the canal and seals it. Restoration of the tooth will be done through composite filling and a crown. By doing this, we are establishing protection from further damage. At Artsmiles, we offer dental filling and crowns that are shaped, coloured, and sized to suit your smile. This way, we protect the damaged teeth without affecting aesthetics.
- What happens after the endodontic treatment?
Generally, the side effects caused by the treatment are mild. Soreness is normal as the painkiller wears off. You can also experience sensitivity on the tooth which may go on for a few weeks. It may sound worrisome, but the side effects are proven to be so much more tolerable. In such instances, you can opt with over the counter pain medications to help you with the post-treatment side effects. However, patients’ situations vary. Therefore, we will provide specialised instructions specific to your case.
Endodontic patients rarely experience complications after the treatment. So, if you experience persistent problems, don’t hesitate to ring us. Our lines are always available to cater to all our clients.
How Long Does This Treatment Last For
Weeks after the endodontic treatment, your tooth will feel like normal. As a result, you might find it odd that a tooth without the pulp can still look normal and be functional. After an ample amount of time, we will initiate another x-ray to confirm the healing. The endodontic treatment can last a lifetime but is solely dependent on the patient’s oral hygiene and visiting a dentist at least twice a year.
Why Choose ArtSmiles For Your Endodontic Treatment
We take pride in our team of dentists that provide the quality of dental services our patients expect and more. At Artsmiles, we are dedicated to offering excellence, empathy, communication, and technical expertise. Our patients’ safety is paramount. That’s why we keep our team at the highest standard so we can provide a relaxed environment that brings comfort to you. We are offering true value for all, so whether you have health insurance or not, we have you covered. Our staff can provide a number of financial options. Contact us today for more information.