Root Canal in Wilmington, NC
Root Canal Therapy
You may need root canal therapy if you have severe pain while chewing or biting, deep decay or darkening gums, swollen tender gums, a chipped or broken tooth, and lingering sensitivity to hot or cold. While root canals have an outdated reputation for being painful, the truth is that modern dental anesthetics have advanced significantly, making most root canal procedures totally pain-free. In fact, living with an infected or decaying tooth is much more painful than a quick root canal procedure.
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What is Root Canal Treatment?
Root canal treatment, also called endodontic therapy, is a common dental procedure that saves severely damaged teeth. Root canal treatment is often necessary when the pulp (the soft part of the tooth which contains nerve tissue, blood vessels, and other cells) becomes inflamed or infected.
This can happen because of deep tooth decay, chips or cracks in the tooth, severe gum disease (periodontal disease), dental trauma and injuries, or loose or large cavity filling that lets in bacteria into the pulp. The bacteria will eventually destroy the pulp, and without treatment, the infection will spread, resulting in tooth loss.
Root canal treatment is often recommended to avoid tooth loss. The procedure involves the removal of infected or damaged pulp in the root cavity, then cleaning, disinfecting, filling, and sealing the cavity to prevent further infection or damage. Afterward, the tooth is restored with a crown or filling to return it to full function and aesthetics.
Root Canal Diagnosis and Treatment
Here’s what you can expect when you come for root canal treatment at Mayfaire Family Dentistry:
- Exam, Diagnosis, and Treatment Planning: Dr. Overton will carefully examine the infected tooth and take X-rays to confirm the diagnosis and determine if a root canal is the best treatment option. We’ll then develop a custom treatment plan that offers the best outcomes.
- Root Canal Therapy: During your root canal therapy, we’ll numb the area near the affected tooth to ensure your comfort during the procedure. When your tooth is numb, we will make a small opening in the top of the tooth to expose the infected pulp, then carefully remove it using special tools. The canal is then cleaned and shaped, and a topical antibiotic is applied to ensure that the infection is gone and to prevent reinfection. We will then will fill and seal the tooth with a sealer paste and rubber-like material called gutta-percha, then restore the tooth with a crown.
- Aftercare and Recovery: Recovery after root canal therapy is usually quick after the restoration is placed. You may experience mild pain for the first few days following treatment, but over-the-counter pain medications are enough to manage it. Remember not to bite or chew with the treated tooth if a crown hasn’t been placed to avoid fracturing your tooth. You can resume normal chewing within a few days after the crown is placed. To prevent further decay, continue to practice good dental hygiene.
Benefits of Root Canal Treatment
There are several benefits of visiting a root canal dentist:
- Prevents tooth loss: There are usually two options when dealing with a severely damaged tooth: a root canal procedure or tooth extraction. Unlike a tooth extraction which leaves gaps between your teeth and requires further restorative treatments such as dental implants, a root canal procedure saves your natural tooth and eliminates the need for other procedures.
- Prevents infection of neighboring teeth: When left untreated, the infection in the pulp will eventually spread to the surrounding gums, teeth, and jawbone, which could lead to tooth loss and, in severe cases, the loss of part of your jaw. Since the root canal treatment removes the infected pulp, there’s no risk of infection spreading.
- Virtually painless: Thanks to modern techniques and effective anesthesia, root canal treatment is a virtually painless procedure that often leaves you with less discomfort during recovery than if you have your natural tooth extracted.
- Restores tooth functionality: Apart from retaining its natural appearance, your tooth will regain normal functionality with normal biting force and sensation after a successful root canal procedure. You can chew efficiently and enjoy your favorite foods.
Referral to an Endodontist if Necessary
An endodontist is a specialized dentist that focuses on treating dental pulp diseases and performing root canals. We may recommend you to an endodontist if your root canal is complex.
Root Canal Cost
The cost of a root canal procedure varies depending on several factors, such as the procedure’s complexity and the tooth’s location. Generally, it will cost you $620 to $1,100 for a root canal in the front tooth, $705 to $1,250 for a premolar, and $870 to $1,472 for a molar. Fortunately, dental insurance typically covers the cost of a root canal.
Root Canal Dentist in Wilmington, NC
If you have a severely damaged tooth but don’t want to have it extracted, root canal treatment from Mayfaire Family Dentistry is your best choice. We will evaluate your tooth, develop a treatment plan and perform the root canal procedure to remove the infected pulp and restore your tooth to full functionality. Contact us today to schedule your appointment, and let us save your tooth!