Every year, more than 15 million Americans undergo root canal treatment. When performed by an experienced dentist, root canal therapy can prevent the need for an extraction. At Yampa Valley Family Dentistry in Craig, Colorado, family and general dentist, Jason Shockley, MS, DDS, and the team regularly perform root canals on patients of all ages. To see if you’re a candidate for root canal therapy, make an appointment today by calling the office or clicking the online booking tool.
A root canal is a type of oral surgery that involves your provider removing the soft center of a tooth, known as the pulp. The pulp of your tooth contains nerves, blood vessels, and soft tissue that help your tooth grow. However, the pulp isn’t necessary for a tooth to survive.
If you develop a cavity or infection, your Yampa Valley Family Dentistry provider might recommend a root canal to preserve your permanent tooth and prevent the need for an extraction.
Your Yampa Valley Family Dentistry provider might recommend a root canal if they discover an injury, such as infection or inflammation, to your tooth pulp. The crown of your tooth––the visible portion that sits above your gums––can survive with or without pulp. Removing the pulp surgically is the easiest way to preserve your permanent tooth and prevent pain.
Pulp damage can occur for many reasons. Some common culprits include:
Common symptoms associated with damaged or infected pulp include swelling and a sensation of heat in your gums. If you experience these or other similar symptoms, make an appointment at Yampa Valley Family Dentistry as soon as possible.
The providers at Yampa Valley Family Dentistry perform root canal therapy onsite, in their state-of-the-art offices.
Prior to treatment, your dentist administers a local anesthetic to numb your tooth roots and gums. Once the anesthesia sets in, your dentist carefully drills an access hole in the top of your affected tooth and removes the damaged or infected pulp.
After removing the pulp from the center of your tooth, your dentist rinses it out using an antiseptic solution. Next, your dentist fills the hole with a rubber-like material called gutta-percha. Once the gutta-percha dries, your dentist places a temporary crown on top of your tooth.
You return to Yampa Valley Family Dentistry about a week later. At your second appointment, your dentist examines your tooth and, if everything looks good, bonds a permanent crown on top.
After your root canal, your Yampa Valley Family Dentistry provider sends you home with a list of recovery instructions, as well as a prescription for antibiotics. Make sure to take your medications as prescribed and stick to soft foods like soup, yogurt, and applesauce during the first 48 hours. You should feel back to normal within a week of your operation.
If you have a toothache and think you might benefit from root canal therapy, make an appointment at Yampa Valley Family Dentistry today by calling the office or clicking the online booking tool.