Posts for tag: root canal
During this year's baseball spring training, Minnesota Twins center fielder Byron Buxton got into a row with a steak dinner—and the beefsteak got the better of it. During his meal, the Gold Glove winner cracked a tooth.
Fortunately, he didn't lose it. Buxton's dentist rescued the tooth with a dental procedure that's been around for over a century—a root canal treatment. The dependable root canal is responsible for saving millions of teeth each year.
Dentists turn to root canal treatments for a number of reasons: a permanent tooth's roots are dissolving (a condition called resorption); chronic inflammation of the innermost tooth pulp due to repeated fillings; or a fractured or cracked tooth, like Buxton's, in which the pulp becomes exposed to bacteria.
One of the biggest reasons, though, is advanced tooth decay. Triggered by acid, a by-product of bacteria, a tooth's enamel softens and erodes, allowing decay into the underlying dentin. In its initial stages, we can often treat decay with a filling. But if the decay continues to advance, it can infect the pulp and root canals and eventually reach the bone.
Decay of this magnitude seriously jeopardizes a tooth's survival. But we can still stop it before that point with a root canal. The basic procedure is fairly straightforward. We begin first by drilling a small hole into the tooth to access the inner pulp and root canals. Using special instruments, we then remove all of the infected tissue within the tooth.
After disinfecting the now empty spaces and reshaping the root canals, we fill the tooth with a rubber-like substance called gutta percha. This, along with filling the access hole, seals the tooth's interior from future infection. In most cases, we'll return sometime later and bond a life-like crown to the tooth (as Buxton's dentist did for him) for added protection and support.
You would think such a procedure would get its own ticker tape parade. Unfortunately, there's a cultural apprehension that root canals are painful. But here's the truth—because your tooth and surrounding gums are numbed by local anesthesia, a root canal procedure doesn't hurt. Actually, if your tooth has been throbbing from tooth decay's attack on its nerves, a root canal treatment will alleviate that pain.
After some time on the disabled list, Buxton was back in the lineup in time to hit his longest homer to date at 456 feet on the Twins' Opening Day. You may not have that kind of moment after a root canal, but repairing a bothersome tooth with this important procedure will certainly get you back on your feet again.
If you would like more information about root canal therapy, please contact us or schedule a consultation. To learn more, read the Dear Doctor magazine article “A Step-By-Step Guide to Root Canal Treatment.”
Remembered fondly by fans as the wacky but loveable Carlton on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Alfonso Ribeiro is currently in his fifth year hosting America's Funniest Videos. It's the perfect gig for the 48-year-old actor, who loves to laugh and make others laugh as well. This is quite the opposite experience from one he had a few years ago that he remembers all too well: a severely decayed tooth.
After seeing his dentist for an intense toothache, Ribeiro learned he had advanced tooth decay and would need root canal treatment. Ribeiro wasn't thrilled by the news. Like many of us, he thought the procedure would be unpleasant. But he found afterward that not only was the root canal painless, his toothache had vanished.
More importantly, the root canal treatment saved his tooth, as it has for millions of others over the last century. If you're facing a situation similar to Alfonso Ribeiro's, here's a quick look at the procedure that could rescue your endangered tooth.
Getting ready. In preparation for root canal therapy, the tooth and surrounding gums are numbed, often first with a swab of local anesthesia to deaden the surface area in preparation for the injection of the main anesthesia below the surface. A dental dam is then placed to isolate the infected tooth from its neighbors to prevent cross-contamination.
Accessing the interior. To get to the infection, a small access hole is drilled. The location depends on the tooth: in larger back teeth, a hole is drilled through the biting surface, and in front teeth, a hole is drilled on the backside. This access allows us to insert special tools to accomplish the next steps in the procedure.
Cleaning, shaping and filling. Small tools are used to remove the diseased tissue from the interior tooth pulp and root canals. Then the empty spaces are disinfected. This, in effect, stops the infection. Next, the root canals inside the tooth are shaped to allow them to better accept a special filling called gutta percha. The access hole is then sealed to further protect the tooth from future infection, and a temporary crown is placed.
A new crown to boot. Within a couple weeks, we'll cap the tooth with a long-lasting lifelike crown (or a filling on certain teeth). This adds further protection for the tooth against infection, helps strengthen the tooth's structure, and restores the tooth's appearance.
Without this procedure, the chances of a tooth surviving this level of advanced decay are very slim. But undergoing a root canal, as Alfonso Ribeiro did, can give your tooth a real fighting chance.
If you would like more information about root canal treatments, please contact us or schedule a consultation. To learn more, read the Dear Doctor magazine articles “A Step-By-Step Guide to Root Canal Treatment” and “Root Canal Treatment: How Long Will It Last?”
A root canal is a dental procedure that is used to remove infection and bacteria from the cavity inside a tooth. The cavity is then cleaned out and sealed with a filling. In some cases, a crown is added to strengthen the tooth. Dr. Irina Pogosian and Dr. Thomas Ohlson are dentists at the Comprehensive Dental Group in Stamford, CT. Root canals are one of their specialties.
Signs You May Need a Root Canal
Dental patients may need root canal treatment if they notice any of the following signs or symptoms:
- Pain in a tooth or the surrounding gum tissue: If you are experiencing tooth pain when you are biting or chewing when you put pressure on a certain area of your mouth, this may be a sign that you have an infected tooth.
- Dark discoloration in a tooth: If one of your teeth has taken on a black, brown, or grey color, this could be a sign that your root canal is infected.
- Sensitivity to temperature: If you have a sensitivity to hot or cold food or beverages that lingers, this could be a sign of a root canal infection.
- Changes in your gums: If you notice swelling, redness, or lumps on your gums around a particular tooth, these can be signs of an abscess. This should be treated immediately to avoid tooth loss.
If you live in or around Stamford and you are experiencing one or more of these symptoms, don’t wait to seek treatment. Call Dr. Pogosian or Dr. Ohlson at (203) 359-3296 straight away. Don’t delay seeking treatment. The expert dental team at Comprehensive Dental Group can perform a root canal as well as providing general dental care.
A toothache is a miserable experience, especially if swelling, drainage, and bad breath accompany it. Luckily, root canal therapy from Comprehensive Dental Group in Stamford, CT, can eliminate the pain safely and allow you to keep your tooth! Your dentists, Dr. Irina Pogosian and Dr. Thomas Ohlson, keep smiles intact and healthy through this treatment—read on to learn more!
Root canal therapy explained
Root canal therapy treats a tooth's interior pulp when it's become inflamed or infected due to injury, decay, etc. During an appointment at our Stamford practice, your dentist will X-ray and inspect your tooth, along with the surrounding gums and bone. If Dr. Pogosian or Dr. Ohlson determines that the tooth is viable, you'll undergo a comfortable, two-visit procedure right here at Comprehensive Dental Group.
To begin, your dentist will inject the area around the tooth with local anesthetic. When the tooth is numb, they will create a small opening in the tooth to access the root canals. That's where the blood vessels, nerves, and connective tissue reside.
The dentist then removes the pulp with specialized tools, before smoothing and disinfecting each canal (there are up to four in a single tooth), and sealing them with biocompatible gutta-percha. After each canal is treated, a temporary crown covers the tooth so that it can heal.
In a week, you'll have your second treatment. Here, Dr. Ohlson or Dr. Pogosian removes the temporary cap and installs a custom-fabricated crown made of premium-grade ceramic. Your restored tooth will look, feel, and act perfectly natural—no more pain!
The American Association of Endodontists says that you'll likely keep your tooth for the rest of your life. That's how successful root canal therapy is! Just brush twice a day with a quality toothpaste, and carefully floss around your treated tooth to avoid plaque and tartar build-up. See your dentist at Comprehensive Dental Group in Stamford every six months for a complete check-up and hygienic cleaning.
Don't suffer from toothache pain when your friends at Comprehensive Dental Group can save that tooth and make you feel better! Call us today at (203) 359-3296.
Root canals are one of the most dreaded dental procedures; their bad reputation carries over from the time before anesthetics like Novocaine were used regularly. However, as you'll learn in this article, root canals don't actually cause pain; rather, they relieve the pain caused by an infection inside the tooth that destroys its soft tissues and blood vessels. At Comprehensive Dental Group in Stamford, CT, our dentists, Dr. Irina Pogosian and Dr. Thomas Ohlson, believe in keeping our patients well-informed of the procedures they need. Read on to learn more!
How do I know if I need a root canal?
The only way to be sure that a root canal is necessary is to visit your Stamford dentist, but there can be some tell-tale signs that could indicate that you'll need one. Lingering sensitivity to hot or cold stimuli, such as pizza fresh from the oven or ice water, can be a clue that the tissues inside the tooth are infected. A wave of dental pain that happens for seemingly no reason is also suspect. Lesions that form on the gums are also a strong indicator that a root canal is needed; this alerts your Stamford dentist to the body attempting to release the bacteria from inside the tooth.
Why do I need a root canal?
It might seem pointless to treat a "dead" tooth, but a root canal from your Stamford dentist is imperative to not only removing a potentially dangerous infection, but also preserving the structure of the tooth and helping to ensure the health of the rest of your teeth. Extracting or pulling a tooth leaves a large gap in your mouth, which the other teeth perceive to be a problem. The teeth next to and above the empty space begin to shift out of place in an attempt to "find" the missing tooth, which leads to bone degeneration and the potential loss of other teeth. By having a root canal, you're maintaining the normal balance inside your mouth, as well as keeping up your appearance and ability to chew and talk properly.
If you think you might need a root canal, or any other dental procedure, contact Comprehensive Dental Group in Stamford, CT, to schedule an appointment with one of our skilled dentists today!