Regular dental check-ups can reduce the risk of developing oral health concerns such as cavities and gum disease and allow for early detection of any issues to limit the invasiveness and expense of treatment. This review from a general dentist discusses the specific benefits of regular dental check-up visits.Regular dental check-ups from a general dentist…
Dental Situations Where a Root Canal is Recommended
Root canal treatment is usually required when the nerves and pulp inside teeth get inflamed, irritated or infected. Millions of people undergo the procedure every year, and it is often due to different dental conditions. Continue reading to know when the general dentist might recommend the procedure.
The need for root canal therapy
Root canal therapy prevents further damage to a tooth that has infected pulp and root canals. The dentist will drill into the tooth to reach the pulp. After removing the diseased pulp tissue, the dentist will fill the empty pulp chamber and root canals with a material called gutta-percha. The tooth will then be sealed and covered by a dental crown.
Tooth pain is usually the first sign of a severe dental problem, but it does not always indicate the need for a root canal. A dentist will need to examine the tooth to know, but patients can also watch out for certain signs. Even if the pain goes away, it is still essential to have a dental professional check. The following are conditions that may require root canal therapy.
Tooth decay, also known as cavities, develops when bacterial plaque accumulates on the teeth and produce acids that eat into the enamel. Without dental intervention, minor decay can turn into deep decay, then infection, followed by debilitating pain and then even tooth loss. Decay can be undetectable at first when it is only on the enamel. Once the decay gets to the inner layer of the tooth, it damages the tooth pulp, which contains sensitive nerves and blood vessels. That is when the pain starts.
Repeated dental procedures
Repeated or multiple dental treatments on a single tooth can increase the chances of a future root canal treatment. A tooth may need multiple dental treatments for several reasons. Recurring cavities requires that the tooth be filled; the filling will need to be removed if decay reoccurs. Treating that same tooth for a crack or break due to trauma, while a different form of treatment, puts stress on the already treated tooth. Eventually, a root canal may be the only way to save the tooth.
If a cavity goes on for too long, large fillings may be necessary to restore a tooth. Since decay is extensive, more of the tooth’s structure must be removed and replaced with a larger filling. This compromises the structural integrity of the tooth and increases the chances of the need for a future root canal treatment. A filling is considered “large” if it is more than a third of the tooth. If decay or a filling gets to the tooth pulp, infection or inflammation may occur.
Cracks or chips
Dental trauma such as cracks or chips are usually the reason for a root canal treatment. Although composite bonding can repair most minor cracks and chips, more severe cracks (especially those that reach a tooth’s center) may require a root canal treatment before bonding or placing dental crowns.
With good care, a tooth that has undergone root canal therapy can survive a lifetime. To learn more about the procedure, book an appointment with the general dentist.
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