Root Canal Therapy
Root canal is one of the most dreaded phrases used in dentistry. However, today its reputation is a little undeserved. Innovations in technology and pain relief used in modern dentistry mean that today, root canal is rarely more complex or more painful than many other types of dental procedure.
Dr. Khalil and his team have the skill and experience to preserve your infected tooth by delivering effective root canal therapy in Oakton, VA.
What is root canal therapy?
Root canal therapy treats infections that lie within the deepest part of the tooth – the dental pulp.
Teeth have three layers. The outermost layer is made from enamel and forms the visible part of the tooth. The enamel layer is also the hardest. The middle layer is a little softer and known as dentin. The very center of the tooth is extremely soft and called the pulp.
Within the pulp there are threads that are known as root canals, and these run right from the crown of the tooth to the very bottom. Some teeth have just one root canal, others may have several. When an infection gets into a root canal, it can prevent it from supplying the tooth with the blood vessels, nutrients and nerves that it needs to be healthy. Therefore, leaving an infected root canal untreated can cause the tooth to become diseases and eventually fall out.
However, this doesn’t mean that losing your tooth is unavoidable. Successful root canal therapy can eradicate the infection, save your natural tooth and help to preserve your smile for years to come.
Symptoms of a root canal infection?
Dental infections are well known for their ability to spread quickly, and they are often well underway by the time the first symptoms are noticed.
If you have an infection in the root canal, you may experience sensitivity to particularly hot or cold food and drink, or pain when biting and chewing. However, as the infection progresses, you may also experience:
Swelling of your jaw and face
Swelling in the gum around the affected tooth
Pus or oozing from the affected tooth
The affected tooth may also darken in color, as it loses the supply of blood and nutrients that it needs to stay healthy.
Root canal procedure
The root canal process is simple and takes place over two appointments. During the first, your mouth will be numbed using a local anesthetic.
We will then drill through to expose your root canal. Then, using special tools, we will clean the bacteria from inside it. You should feel no pain, just a little pressure. The tooth is then capped using a temporary cavity filling or crown, and allowed to settle.
After your root canal, you will be asked to return to our offices around a week later, where the temporary cover will be removed, and we will be able to check the tooth to ensure that the infection has cleared completely. If so, we can seal the tooth permanently, which will prevent the infection from reoccurring.
Can’t I just have a course of antibiotics instead of root canal?
Although antibiotics are effective at treating many different infections, they have proved to be unsuccessful in treating those found in the root canal.
Root canal therapy is the only way to be certain of eradicating the infection from the root canal system and preserving the health of your tooth.
Can I be sedated?
Dental anxiety is more common than most people think. At Aesthetic Dentistry of Oakton, we completely understand that many of our patients may be nervous, scared, or even panicked about the thought of having a dental treatment.
Your comfort and safety is our primary concern, so our reassuring team will work hard to ensure that you feel as relaxed and calm as possible when visiting us.
Sedation is a possibility for some patients. Please enquire about our sedation services during your consultation appointment.
Dr. Khalil and his experienced, knowledgeable, and friendly team are delighted to offer their root canal therapy services to patients in and around Oakton, VA.
To find out more about any of our services, or to arrange a consultation, please do not hesitate to call or visit our offices at 703-343-9005.