Root CanalAn Overview
If you have an infected tooth, cracked tooth or tooth pain, you may require a root canal procedure. Fallston dentist, Dr. Melissa Elliott, 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
Schedule A Dental Exam Today
Don’t let your tooth pain go undiagnosed. Dr. Elliott 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.
Root Canal What to Expect
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. Elliott will drill a small hole into the tooth, allowing access to the tooth pulp. The infected tissue and damaged nerve will be removed and the root canal will be thoroughly cleaned and polished. If there is an infection antibiotics may be prescribed and the tooth will be temporarily sealed until the infection has healed.
Once the infection is clear and the root canal is free of debris, it will be filled with a biocompatible rubber compound called gutta percha. The tooth will then be covered either a dental filling or dental crown 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 relieve from toothache and other pain.
Is there an alternative to root canal treatment?
The alternative to a root canal is a tooth extraction. When considering a root canal vs extraction, it is important to remember that once a tooth is lost, the replacement options become more difficult and complicated.
Our dentists generally supports 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. Patients should be sure to eat and take pain medication before the procedure.
Patients should also be sure to get a full night’s sleep and be well rested prior to having a root canal.