Got a toothache in Tyler? Get the help you need with a root canal from the team at Prime Dental + Vishal Kulkarni.
A root canal is a type of endodontic treatment that is used to treat infected teeth. In a root canal, Dr. Vishal Kulkarni (Dr. V) will open up your tooth, clean up the interior to remove decayed and damaged pulp, and then fill and cap the tooth. With timely intervention, a root canal can treat your toothache, prevent further damage to your tooth, and preserve your tooth for years to come.
“Anterior” root canals are used to treat the front teeth, while “posterior” root canals are used to treat the rear teeth. At Prime Dental + Vishal Kulkarni, we offer both types of root canal treatment in Tyler, TX.
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Tooth infections often happen when a cavity eats through the outer layers of your tooth. This can expose the “pulp” inside your tooth to oral bacteria, resulting in an infection. With a root canal, Dr. V can eliminate this infection and restore your tooth.
If you break a tooth due to oral trauma, it may become infected if the pulp is exposed. Because of this, root canals are often recommended as part of the treatment process for repairing a broken tooth.
Replacing a large filling is often not possible, as this may compromise your tooth and leave it vulnerable to infection. If you have a large filling that has failed or is worn out, a root canal and a dental crown may be necessary to replace the filling.
To begin the root canal treatment process, Dr. V will clean the treatment area and numb your tooth. Once your tooth is numb, he will use a dental drill to create a small opening in the tooth.
Through the opening in your tooth, Dr. V will use special dental tools to clean out damaged and infected pulp. Then, he will fill up the tooth with a material called “gutta-percha” which replaces the pulp.
As the final step of your root canal appointment, Dr. V will place a temporary crown on your tooth to protect it. You will need to come back to our office several times over the next few weeks to get fitted for a permanent porcelain crown. Your permanent crown will provide excellent protection, and keep your tooth in great shape for years to come.
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Dentists mostly recommend root canals for treating dental decay as opposed to tooth extraction. Remember, every tooth in your jaw serves a specific function, and removing one or more teeth is incapacitating your mouth.
What’s more, missing teeth promote jawbone deterioration. You see, without teeth to pressurize and stimulate the jawbone, it slowly starts to disintegrate. Plus, tooth extractions may warrant more expensive treatments like dental implants or bridges.
The most obvious sign that you need a root canal is persistent tooth pain that won’t go away despite taking painkillers. This is a sign that the bacterial infection in your tooth has spread and irritated sensitive nerve fibers in the pulp cavity. A root canal will remove the infected pulp and give you immediate pain relief.
You may also need a root canal if you fractured your teeth and exposed the pulp. The root canal will remove any pulp infection and restore the rest of the teeth, sometimes by installing a dental crown. Patients with overly sensitive teeth might also need a root canal.
Dental crowns are meant to restore the shape and structure of the tooth, allowing proper functionality. However, they aren’t necessary for root canals unless under the dentist’s recommendations.
Root canals last five to ten years before failure. That said, there are a few factors that affect how long your root canal will last including the extent of the decay. Root canals for addressing moderate cases of tooth decay last longer than those for severe cases of decay. In addition, root canals last a shorter time in older patients compared to younger ones.
The location of the affected tooth also affects the lifespan of the root canal. Root canals done on the front teeth last longer than those done on the teeth located at the back of the mouth. That’s because the front teeth are easier to access allowing the dentists to do a better job. However, it’s hard to say the same about molars located at the back of the teeth.
A root canal involves removing the infected pulp from the pulp cavity located at the center of the tooth. This procedure is usually recommended to patients with moderate to severe dental decay. It basically involves the following:
The dentist will first inject a local anesthetic into the gums near the affected tooth to numb them. They’ll then use a drill to remove the decayed portions of the tooth before creating an access hole to the pulp cavity at the upper surface. Lastly, they’ll scoop the infected pulp and disinfect the pulp cavity before finally sealing the access hole.
At Prime Dental, we offer a full scope of dental services in Tyler, TX, including root canals. Dr. Vishal Kulkarni will work with you to ensure you receive the best care possible. If you have questions about root canals in Tyler, please call us at (903) 200-5111 to get answers and learn more about our preventive and restorative dentistry treatments.
Yes, you can drive home after a root canal if you had no sedation during the procedure. However, if any sedation was administered, you’ll need someone to drive you home. The only exception to this is if you have received nitrous oxide (laughing gas), as this is a mild sedative with no lingering effects. The effects of more potent sedation options usually take several hours to wear off, so you will be unable to safely operate a vehicle immediately after your root canal treatment.
You should be able to eat as usual after a root canal procedure. However, it is a good idea to wait for a few hours after the treatment is done to allow the filling to harden fully. You may also want to wait until the anesthetic wears off; this prevents you from biting your tongue or cheeks.
Avoid eating hard or crunchy foods for at least 24 hours after the treatment. These foods could cause damage or pain to the treated tooth. Stick to soft foods such as protein shakes, applesauce, yogurt, smoothies, and mashed potatoes.
The most common signs that you may require a root canal include the following:
A root canal or endodontic treatment is necessary when the pulp (the soft inner part) of your tooth becomes infected due to a large cavity, failed dental procedures, repeated dental treatments, or a crack in the tooth.
During the procedure, your dentist will remove the infected pulp before cleaning and sealing your root canals. This procedure can help prevent further damage to the teeth and restore them to a healthy state. A root canal can also be recommended to help prevent the need for an implant or dental bridge.
Root canal therapy is intended to provide long-term relief and save the affected tooth from extraction. When performed properly and with adequate follow-up care, the effects of root canal therapy can last a lifetime. However, it's essential to maintain good oral hygiene practices, such as regular brushing, flossing, and dental check-ups, to ensure the longevity of the treated tooth. Additionally, a dental crown or other restoration may be necessary after the root canal to protect and strengthen the tooth, which can further contribute to its long-term success.
Maybe. Toothaches are a very common sign of tooth infections. However, there are other things that can cause toothaches and sensitivity, like teeth grinding or damaged and worn-out dental work.
In general, though, pain is your body’s way of telling you that something is wrong. If your tooth hurts and you’re not sure why, it’s a good idea to contact Prime Dental + Vishal Kulkarni for a consultation. Dr. V can diagnose your issue and recommend the proper treatment to eliminate your toothache and protect your oral health.
No. Your mouth will be numb, so you won’t feel any discomfort. In fact, since many patients have serious toothaches before getting a root canal, a root canal can actually relieve your pain, and help you get back to your day-to-day routine without distractions and discomfort.