If you have an infected tooth, cracked tooth or tooth pain, you may require a root canal procedure. Fallston dentist Dr. Kimberly Comeau performs root canal procedures in our Harford County dentist office.
The root canal is the area inside of the tooth that contains the tooth pulp including nerves and other sensitive tissue. Commonly, a root canal is used to refer to a root canal procedure where the tooth is treated for disease or decay.
Root canal therapy is a conservative treatment option for advanced tooth decay. We recommend this treatment to save the natural tooth from extraction when a dental filling is no longer a suitable treatment option.
Root Canal Symptoms
While you may not experience any root canal symptoms, many people often experience the following symptoms which can indicate the need for a root canal procedure:
- Toothache or tooth pain, especially when chewing or biting
- Tooth sensitivity, especially to hot or cold foods and drinks
- Darkening of the tooth
- Soreness or tenderness to the gums surrounding the affected tooth
About the Root Canal Procedure
The goal of root canal therapy is to remove all infected tissue from the inside of the tooth and then fill the tooth with synthetic material to prevent further infection.
Dr. Comeau will drill a small hole into the tooth to gain access to the tooth pulp. Then she will gently remove the infected tissue and nerves. We will thoroughly clean out the root canal then clean and polish the tooth. If there is an infection, we will prescribe antibiotics and temporarily seal the tooth until the infection is gone.
Once the infection is clear and the root canal is free of debris, we will fill the root canal chamber with a biocompatible rubber compound called gutta percha. The dentist will then cover the tooth with a dental filling or dental crown. This is to add strength and protect it from future damage.
Root Canal FAQs
Is a root canal painful?
The pain associated with a root canal actually comes from the infection itself. The root canal procedure feels similar to having a dental filling placed, providing instant relief from toothache and other pain.
Is there an alternative to root canal treatment?
The alternative to a root canal is tooth extraction. However, when considering an extraction, it is important to remember that once a tooth is lost, it is difficult and expensive to replace the tooth.
Our dentists generally support the choice to conserve the natural tooth. During your consultation and examination, we will help you to make the best choice for your long term health and happiness.
How much does a root canal cost?
The cost of root canal procedures depends on your specific circumstances. We accept most dental insurance and can submit claims on your behalf. We also offer flexible payment options to help you cover the root canal cost.
How many days off do you need for a root canal?
Most patients take off one to two days following a root canal. Pain medications and sedation may make patients tired and cause them to feel slightly out of it. It is best to rest the day following your root canal.
What should you not do before a root canal?
Before a root canal your dentist will give you a list of things you should and should not do. Patients should avoid alcohol for at least 24 hours prior to a root canal procedure. Also, be sure to eat and take pain medication before the procedure. Most importantly, patients should get a full night’s sleep and be well rested prior to having a root canal.
Schedule A Dental Exam Today
Don’t let your tooth pain go undiagnosed. Dr. Comeau offers root canals in Bel Air, MD, and surrounding communities. We offer a variety of services to help relieve your pain. Call today or schedule an appointment online.