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Posts for tag: Root Canal

By Laura Elliff, DMD
June 22, 2018
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: Root Canal  

The term “root canal” is a part of our social lexicon, and not always with a positive meaning. But contrary to its negative reputation, a root canal treatment can make all the difference in your dental health.

Here are 3 things you may not know about this important procedure.

A root canal treatment is a “tooth” saver. Decay deep inside the tooth pulp puts the entire tooth at risk. The infection not only destroys nerves and tissue in the pulp, it has a direct path to the root through tiny passageways known as root canals. By cleaning out this infected tissue, then filling the empty pulp chamber and the root canals with a special filling, the procedure stops the disease from further harm and seals the tooth from future infection. Without it, it’s highly likely the tooth will be lost and other teeth threatened by the infection.

A root canal doesn’t cause pain — it relieves it. The biggest misconception about root canal treatments is their supposed painfulness. That’s just not true, thanks to anesthetic techniques that numb the teeth and gums — and any discomfort afterward is quite manageable with mild anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen. The procedure actually stops the real pain, caused by the infection damaging and finally killing the tooth’s nerves, when it stops the infection.

Root canal treatments are even more effective thanks to recent advancements. Not all infected tooth situations are the same: some teeth have smaller offset passageways called accessory canals that grow off a larger root canal that can be quite difficult to detect and access. Missing them can leave the door open for re-infection. In recent years, though, endodontists, specialists in root canal disorders, have improved the way we address these complications using advanced technologies like specialized microscopic equipment and new filling techniques. The result: a lower risk of re-infection and a higher chance of long-term success.

Hopefully, you’ll continue to enjoy good dental health and won’t need a root canal treatment. But if you do, rest assured it won’t be the unpleasant experience you might have thought — and will be a welcomed solution to pain and threatening tooth loss.

If you would like more information on root canal treatments, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “A Step-By-Step Guide to Root Canal Treatment.”

By Laura Elliff, DMD
October 25, 2017
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: Root Canal  

The prospect of root canal therapy is scary for many people. We've been conditioned to believe that suffering from a crippling toothache - root canaland the decay or infection that is causing it - is preferable than the treatment because root canals have a reputation for being incredibly painful. But difficult as it might be to believe after a lifetime of conditioning to fear and avoid root canals, not only is the pain factor greatly exaggerated, it is actually a tooth-saving procedure that can also spare you more painful (and expensive) treatment down the road. The dentists at Elliff Dental Family and Cosmetic Dentistry in Batavia, IL, recommend that you schedule an appointment as soon as possible if you are experiencing pain, have had trauma to a tooth, or symptoms of an infection.

Root Canal Therapy in Batavia, IL

Only a dentist can tell you for sure if a root canal is necessary to repair a damaged tooth. But there are a number of symptoms to be aware of, including:

  • Pain (often severe)
  • Swelling or sensitivity of the gums around the tooth
  • Hot and cold sensitivity
  • Dark spot on a tooth (not related to extrinsic stains from food, drinks, or smoking)

If it turns out that you do need root canal therapy, the procedure really does sound much worse than it actually is. In reality, the level of discomfort involved is similar to getting a cavity filled. In fact, root canal therapy relieves the pain and discomfort caused by a damaged tooth.

Find a Dentist Batavia, IL

The best way to maintain healthy teeth and gums is to practice good oral hygiene and to get regular dental checkups and professional teeth cleanings. But if you are experiencing pain or have an infected tooth, a root canal may be your best treatment option. For more information, contact Elliff Dental Family and Cosmetic Dentistry by calling (630) 482-7200 to schedule an appointment today.