Posts for tag: root canal
Toothaches are often a sign of a cavity, but they can also be an indication of something more. Cavities form in the outer layers of a tooth and can cause discomfort. However, toothaches can also be caused by the spread of infection to the soft pulp tissue at the center of a tooth that extends down into the canals of the root as well. A root canal alleviates pain by clearing away the infected pulp. The skilled dentists at Stiles Family Dentistry in Salem, NH, perform root canals to treat toothaches and preserve teeth.
Signs You Need a Root Canal
Several symptoms can develop when you need a root canal. A severe or persistent toothache is one possible sign. Other signs that root canal treatment might be needed include:
- Pain or sensitivity when biting and chewing food
- Darkening or discoloration of the affected tooth
- Tenderness or swelling of the gums near the affected tooth
- Ongoing sensitivity to hot or cold foods and drinks
- The formation of an abscess in the gums
If you experience any of these systems, one of the experienced dentists at our office in Salem, NH, can determine if a root canal or another type of treatment is needed.
Root Canal Treatment
Root canal treatment might sound scary to some people, but it is not much different than having a cavity filled. Plus, once the procedure is done, your toothache and other symptoms will be eliminated. In addition to alleviating pain, other benefits of root canal treatment include strengthening the affected tooth, restoring tooth functioning, and preserving your tooth so extraction can be avoided. A root canal also helps stop the infection from spreading to other areas of the mouth.
Root canal treatment is performed by creating a small opening in the tooth so the dentist can reach the inner layer and remove the infected pulp. Afterward, the chamber of the tooth and the canals of the root are thoroughly cleaned and disinfected. It is then filled in with a biocompatible material. Finally, the tooth is sealed to prevent infection from developing again in the future. In some cases, a dental crown might be placed over the treated tooth to further strengthen and protect it.
Root canal treatment can alleviate your toothache and help you avoid having your tooth extracted. Schedule an appointment with one of our highly trained dentists to find out if you need a root canal by calling Stiles Family Dentistry in Salem, NH, at (603) 893-4538.
Remembered fondly by fans as the wacky but loveable Carlton on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Alfonso Ribeiro is currently in his fifth year hosting America's Funniest Videos. It's the perfect gig for the 48-year-old actor, who loves to laugh and make others laugh as well. This is quite the opposite experience from one he had a few years ago that he remembers all too well: a severely decayed tooth.
After seeing his dentist for an intense toothache, Ribeiro learned he had advanced tooth decay and would need root canal treatment. Ribeiro wasn't thrilled by the news. Like many of us, he thought the procedure would be unpleasant. But he found afterward that not only was the root canal painless, his toothache had vanished.
More importantly, the root canal treatment saved his tooth, as it has for millions of others over the last century. If you're facing a situation similar to Alfonso Ribeiro's, here's a quick look at the procedure that could rescue your endangered tooth.
Getting ready. In preparation for root canal therapy, the tooth and surrounding gums are numbed, often first with a swab of local anesthesia to deaden the surface area in preparation for the injection of the main anesthesia below the surface. A dental dam is then placed to isolate the infected tooth from its neighbors to prevent cross-contamination.
Accessing the interior. To get to the infection, a small access hole is drilled. The location depends on the tooth: in larger back teeth, a hole is drilled through the biting surface, and in front teeth, a hole is drilled on the backside. This access allows us to insert special tools to accomplish the next steps in the procedure.
Cleaning, shaping and filling. Small tools are used to remove the diseased tissue from the interior tooth pulp and root canals. Then the empty spaces are disinfected. This, in effect, stops the infection. Next, the root canals inside the tooth are shaped to allow them to better accept a special filling called gutta percha. The access hole is then sealed to further protect the tooth from future infection, and a temporary crown is placed.
A new crown to boot. Within a couple weeks, we'll cap the tooth with a long-lasting lifelike crown (or a filling on certain teeth). This adds further protection for the tooth against infection, helps strengthen the tooth's structure, and restores the tooth's appearance.
Without this procedure, the chances of a tooth surviving this level of advanced decay are very slim. But undergoing a root canal, as Alfonso Ribeiro did, can give your tooth a real fighting chance.
If you would like more information about root canal treatments, please contact us or schedule a consultation. To learn more, read the Dear Doctor magazine articles “A Step-By-Step Guide to Root Canal Treatment” and “Root Canal Treatment: How Long Will It Last?”
An infection in the root and pulp of your tooth could result in pain and discomfort, or worse, tooth loss. When this occurs, a root canal is often required to remove the decay. However, how do you know if you really need to undergo this procedure? Here at Stiles Family Dentistry in Salem, NH, our team of dentists can determine if you require a root canal during a simple examination. Below are some warning signs which indicate that you might want to visit our office:
Sensitivity to Cold and Heat
This could feel like a sharp ache or dull pain, and although different things can cause these sensations, if you feel your tooth hurting whenever you consume something cold, hot, or sugary, it may mean that the tooth’s nerves and blood vessels are already damaged or severely infected.
This is one of the most common signs that may indicate you require a root canal. You may feel this pain deep in your tooth and/or your other teeth, jaw, and face at all times, or in a recurring fashion.
Swollen and Irritated Gums
Swollen gums surrounding your painful tooth could indicate an infection that only a root canal could fix. Depending on the severity of the infection, the swelling might be continuous or come and go, and it might be tender to the touch as well. It’s also possible that you’ll see a tiny pimple or bump on the affected site—this is known as an abscess, or gum boil, and it may leak pus due to the infection.
A Discolored Tooth
In some cases, a pulp infection could result in the affected tooth turning gray or black. While this could be caused by other things, if you’re also experiencing other tooth decay symptoms, see your dentist in Salem, NH, as soon as possible for a checkup.
Pain When Eating or Touching the Tooth
You may need a root canal treatment when your tooth feels painful when you’re eating and when you’re touching it. This is particularly true if the sensitivity and pain remain over time and does not subside even when you’re not eating.
A Loose Tooth
Your tooth may feel loose if it’s infected. In the event that you have multiple loose teeth, you should see your dentist right away to determine the exact cause.
Need a Root Canal?
If you’re experiencing any or all of the symptoms mentioned above, it’s extremely vital that you visit your dentist as early as possible to increase the chances that you save your tooth. Call Stiles Family Dentistry in Salem, NH, at (603) 893-4538 to schedule a consultation with one of our dentists.
Root canals are essential to oral health care. Your Salem, NH, dentists, Drs. Nicholas Papapetros, Paul Masterson, and Jhon Giraldo, use root canal procedures to relieve pain and help teeth regain their health.
One of the main reasons people end up needing a root canal is because of poor oral hygiene. If you don't brush your teeth twice a day and floss at least once, then you will suffer from plaque and tartar building up.
A tooth is composed of several layers that all become compromised when someone neglects their oral hygiene. These layers include:
- Enamel: The outermost layer, it is the white part of the tooth and also the strongest part.
- Dentin: Right under the enamel, this layer is yellowish and a bit softer.
- Pulp: Located in the center of the tooth, this section consists of blood vessels and nerves.
- Cementum: The surface layer of the tooth root, it anchors the whole tooth to the jawbone.
When a cavity is deep enough to infiltrate the enamel and penetrate through the dentin, it reaches the nerve-rich layer of pulp, causing acute pain. Your Salem dentist will then need to remove the pulp, clean and disinfect the canal from any remaining bacteria, and then finally seal the canal to prevent bacteria from entering.
In order to properly care for your teeth and avoid procedures like a root canal or dental implants, you should do the following:
- Avoid Excessive Sugar: Eating sugary foods and drinks (i.e. candy and soda) heavily contributes to tooth decay, while healthy foods (apples and carrots) actually help scrape plaque off of teeth.
- Use Fluoride-Containing Products: Fluoride prevents tooth decay, so make sure that you regularly use toothpaste and mouthwash that contain fluoride.
If you have any questions or concerns about root canals, do not hesitate to call your Salem, NH, dentists, Drs. Nicholas Papapetros, Paul Masterson, and Jhon Giraldo. You can schedule an appointment at their office by calling (603) 893-4538 today!
You don’t always have to settle for having a tooth extracted immediately when it becomes painfully infected. You may just need a root canal to restore it to good health. Dentists perform over 15 million root canal procedure each year according to the American Association of Endodontists. Know the most important facts about getting a root canal at Stiles Family Dentistry in Salem, NH and when this procedure is most useful.
What Is a Root Canal?
Root canal therapy is a way to disinfect and heal a tooth that has been affected by moderate to severe tooth decay. Tooth decay starts as a very small dental cavity, then progresses to a deeper problem that invades the inner tissues and nerves of the tooth over time. Chances are, when a tooth starts to ache, feel very sensitive, or starts to loosen, you and your dentist should explore the benefits of a root canal.
When a Root Canal Is Needed
A root canal is needed when a tooth is affected by inner decay, yet it is still strong and solid enough to maintain its position in your gumline. First, your Salem, NH dentist will use dental X-rays and a visual exam to identify the presence of tooth decay and inflammation. Using dental tools, your dentist will open the tooth, remove diseased tissue, and refill the opening with a substance called gutta percha. The final step is covering and protecting the tooth with a crown.
Root Canals Work
It’s a myth that extracting a tooth is better than having root canal treatment. The American Association of Endodontists says that the root canal procedures have a high success rate. It’s possible for a treated tooth to maintain its strength and health for a lifetime. Your responsibility is to maintain good gum and oral health to avoid future bouts with dental disease.
Have Your Tooth Treated
The longer you wait for root canal therapy on an infected tooth, the more difficult it will be to save. Get treatment as soon as you start to feel discomfort. Call 603-893-4538 today to schedule an appointment with Dr. Jhon Giraldo, Dr. Paul Masterson, or Dr. Nicholas Papapetros at Stiles Family Dentistry in Salem, NH.