A dental infection can be a painful experience that can also put your teeth in jeopardy. Fortunately, if you detect the issue early enough, your dentist can perform a root canal procedure to stop the infection, relieve the pain, and preserve the tooth. As a trusted family dentistry provider in Waipahu, HI, Jason H. Ikeno, DDS, offers insight on this common dental procedure.
A Dentist’s Guide to Root Canal Therapy
Finding Out if a Root Canal Procedure Is Right for You
A persistent or recurring toothache is one of the most common signs you need to see an emergency dentist for root canal therapy. Your provider will take X-rays to see if an infection is affecting the interior of the tooth—known as the dental pulp. If the issue is treatable, your dentist may perform a root canal procedure. If the infection has caused too much damage, a tooth extraction may be a more practical treatment option.
What Happens During Root Canal Therapy?
To make sure you experience minimal discomfort, your dentist will inject an anesthetic into the gum tissue that will numb the affected area. Once you are prepped for the procedure, your specialist will drill a small hole into the back or top of the tooth.
Next, they will remove the infected and dead dental pulp through the drilled hole. The interior of the tooth will be cleansed and sterilized to prevent bacteria from causing further damage.
A material—known as gutta-percha—will be placed inside the tooth to preserve its structural integrity and seal the ends of the dental roots. Finally, a filling or temporary crown will be applied over the drilled area to protect the surface of the tooth.
What Should You Expect During Recovery?
After root canal therapy, you may experience minimal discomfort as the anesthetic wears off. You should use over-the-counter pain relievers and avoid chewing on the affected side of the mouth to help ease these temporary symptoms. In a few weeks, you’ll visit your dentist to see how the tooth is healing, as well as replace the temporary crown with a permanent one.
If you’re experiencing dental pain and believe root canal therapy may help, Jason H. Ikeno, DDS, can provide stress-free diagnosis and treatment. In addition to serving as an emergency dentist in the Waipahu, HI, area, he also offers a wide range of general and cosmetic dentistry services, including cleanings and teeth bleaching. You can learn more about his approach to comfortable care online, or call (808) 676-1520 to schedule a convenient appointment.