Don’t Be Afraid of Root Canal Therapy


Root Canal is a term that makes most people cringe with fear. In fact, some will actually get out of the dentist’s chair and head for the door if those two seemingly innocent little words are uttered, but patients of the best Dentist in East Greenbush, Dr. J. Craig Alexander have nothing to fear.

According to the American Dental Association, Root Canal therapy is no more painful than a simple dental filling. You may feel some sensitivity for a couple of days after the treatment has been completed, but it certainly will not be anything like the pain from an infection or abscess.

If the pulp, or the soft tissue in the center of a tooth is infected you will most probably need a root canal. That soft tissue contains connective tissue, nerves, and blood vessels.

Your tooth pulp could become infected if you have a deep cavity, a broken, or cracked tooth or if you have had to repeat certain dental procedures more than once. You may also need a root canal if your tooth has been injured.

You may need root canal therapy if you are experiencing tooth pain while chewing or applying pressure or sensitivity to cold or hot temperatures. Your dentist may also recommend a root canal if the tooth is discolored of if swelling is present in the gums closest to the offending tooth. Recurring or persistent pimples on the gums may also be a sign that you need to see your dentist for root canal therapy. Of course, occasionally there may be no symptoms at all.

Depending on your situation, you may require more than one visit. After an x-ray, your dentist will check for infection before numbing the area with a local anesthetic around the tooth. Because the nerve in the tooth is already dead, you may not require any anesthesia, but most dentists prefer to use it, as it tends to make patients feel more at ease and relaxed.

After your dentist places a sheet of rubber, or a rubber dam, around the tooth to keep it dry, a hole for access will be drilled directly into the tooth before removing the infected nerve tissue, debris, and bacteria.

Once thoroughly cleaned, your dentist will seal the tooth. If an infection is present, your dentist may decide to wait for a week or so before sealing. If it is not sealed on the same day, a temporary filling will be placed. Because most root canals are necessary because of large restorations, your dentist may also recommend a crown to prevent breakage.

If you think you may need root canal therapy, don’t wait, schedule an appointment with your dentist today.