If the idea of a root canal makes you nervous, you're not alone. Among all the dental procedures out there, the root canal seems to have the worst reputation. This is likely because most people associate root canal treatment with tooth pain.
You might be surprised to find out that this assumption about this helpful procedure is actually wrong. Root canal therapy itself isn't painful – the pain comes from the infection that makes root canal treatment necessary!
Huntsville dentist, Dr. David King, is gentle and provides comfortable root canal treatment that will eliminate both your pain and your infection while also preserving your natural tooth.
Call us at (256) 880-1884 if you are experiencing dental pain or a toothache, or if you have questions about your root canal procedure.
Endodontics is the field of dentistry that focuses on the root canal. While most people tend to refer to the treatment procedure as "getting a root canal," this isn't entirely accurate.
A root canal is a part of the anatomy of your tooth. It's a small canal within your tooth root that allows the nerve to pass through into the tooth.
Sometimes, the root canal can become infected and cause a dental abscess. Because of the proximity to the nerve, it's not hard to see why infection in the root canal is so painful!
Without treatment, the infection could spread to other teeth or even turn into a systemic infection. This is why it's important to notify our Huntsville dental office right away if you are in pain.
There are also cases where root canal therapy is necessary, and you are not experiencing symptoms at all. If the tooth has been traumatized in some way and the nerve is dead, you won't feel pain. The problem, however, still needs to be resolved.
Our priority is to make sure that you are completely comfortable. You'll receive numbing medication so that you don't feel a thing during your procedure, which also means that you no longer have to endure the discomfort from your infection.
Dr. King will use special instruments designed specifically to access the interior of the tooth. He'll clean out the root canal and remove the damaged nerve and tissues. Once the inside is free from infection, he'll add some medication to prevent reinfection, fill the inside with a rubber-like material called gutta-percha, and close up the tooth with a temporary filling.
Depending on the location and function of the tooth, Dr. King may also recommend protecting it with a crown. Because we remove the nerve, the tooth can become brittle, and we don't want to risk it breaking in the future.
A filling may also be used to strengthen a smaller tooth after root canal treatment. Dr. King will determine which treatment will ensure that you have the same function you had before your tooth infection.
Many people feel instant improvement after their root canal procedure, mainly because we eliminate the infection. However, it is normal to feel tenderness when chewing after a root canal, and you can use pain medication as needed.
We do encourage patients to call us if their pain is not residing within a few days of root canal treatment, as you should continue to improve gradually.
The residual discomfort you experience is because of the inflammation caused by your immune system. Once it gets the message that the infection is gone, this inflammation will die down, and you'll be back to your usual self again!
The cost of root canal treatment varies for each patient depending on which tooth needs treatment and what type of restoration you'll need to strengthen your tooth. We will always discuss the cost of your treatment with you before performing any procedures, so there are no financial surprises.
Many dental insurance plans offer coverage for root canal treatment that is based on a percentage of the cost, which helps to reduce your out-of-pocket portion.
Dr. King also offers an in-house savings plan that gives patients without dental insurance a discount on many procedures like root canal treatment. Savings plan benefits are available for use right away with no waiting periods, and we're happy to discuss our in-house savings plan with you if it's of interest.
If monthly payments would be more convenient for your budget, we also work with third-party financing companies like CareCredit or Lending Club that can help make your treatment more affordable.
Root canal treatment is something you should not wait to complete, especially if your tooth is infected. Unfortunately, your tooth will not get better without treatment, and you run the risk of your infection spreading to other teeth or critical areas of your body if you wait to treat your tooth. Ultimately, an infected tooth that is not treated will result in tooth loss.
At King Dental, we are always happy to work with our patients to find financial solutions that make sense so you can get the dental treatment you need when you need it most.
Even though there are certain root canal procedures that you can't avoid, there are also measures you can take to help prevent a painful dental infection. Consistently attending your preventive cleanings and checkups every six months is your best defense against a tooth infection.
Old metal fillings tend to break down over time because temperature changes in the mouth cause them to expand and contract and pull away from your tooth. Breakdown of an older restoration allows harmful bacteria back into your tooth, which can result in tooth decay and even an infection. Your Huntsville dentist will make you aware of any crowns or fillings that are causing concern, and that you might need to replace.
If you have a tooth that suddenly becomes sensitive to temperature, even if the pain goes away, it's a good idea to contact King Dental right away for an examination. The discomfort could be indicating tooth decay, and you may be able to avoid a painful infection if Dr. King can treat your tooth sooner rather than later.
Routine teeth cleanings in Huntsville remove any of the excess plaque buildup that can lead to tooth decay or a dental infection. We'll also help you make the most of your home care routine with recommendations for products that can help protect your dental health.
Dr. King will check your oral health with x-rays and a routine examination to detect any concerns as early as possible. Tooth decay that we catch in its early stages can often be treated with a simple dental filling, which protects your tooth from developing an infection. We'll also ensure that any existing restorations you have are healthy and functioning correctly during your routine examinations.
If you are experiencing dental pain, please don't wait to call our Huntsville, AL dental office at (256) 880-1884. We will get you in as quickly as possible to determine the cause of your pain and the most appropriate treatment.