One of the worst things you can have in your smile is a toothache. Whether it’s constant or it comes and goes, it can be uniquely painful. Pain is your body’s way of telling you something is wrong, and that’s the truth with a toothache. It normally means you have an infection inside your tooth.
Leaving it alone is one of the worst things you can do. Until treated, an infected tooth will get worse and grow brittle. Eventually, it will need to be removed.
Call our Lancaster, CA dental office today at 661-524-8457 to make your appointment for a root canal. Despite what the myths might suggest, modern root canals are not any more painful than getting a filling. Dr. Boyle is your Lancaster dentist with the training, dental sedation, and anesthetic needed to help your root canal go comfortably.
When Would Anyone Need A Root Canal?
Your mouth is home to some harmful bacteria. That’s okay because everyone has them. The problem is how they eat tiny food particles stuck in your mouth, and in return, they produce an acid. This is why you get cavities. That acid erodes holes in your enamel.
Things get much worse when the enamel is breached. This happens when a cavity gets too deep or when you have an injury that cracks the tooth. Either way, you end up with letting those harmful bacteria slip past the enamel and into the inside of that tooth.
All the nerve endings and blood vessels for your teeth are found inside in a place called the dental pulp. When the bacteria infect there, they trigger the nerve endings to give you a strong toothache. But this also starves your tooth, turning your enamel brittle. That’s why you might need a root canal. Without it, that infection keeps spreading until the tooth needs to be removed.
A Typical Root Canal Procedure
What exactly happens during a root canal procedure? That can depend slightly on your particular case, but here’s how a typical root canal from our Lancaster dentist goes.
- Dr. Boyle thoroughly examines your teeth and uses digital X-rays to find the infection.
- The tooth is cleaned and prepared.
- Local anesthetic (and dental sedation if necessary) is used to help you feel comfortable through the root canal procedure.
- A small opening is made in your infected tooth.
- Dr. Boyle carefully removes the infected dental pulp.
- If necessary, an inert substance called gutta percha is used to fill in the leftover space inside the tooth.
- The tooth is sealed and strengthened with a dental crown.
Root Canal Myths & Facts
Unfortunately, there are a lot of myths surrounding root canals. Here are some of the more stubborn myths — and the facts to set the record straight.
MYTH: Root canal are really painful.
FACT: Root canals are no more painful than getting a cavity filled.
A long time ago, root canals were probably painful. But thanks to new techniques, technologies, and anesthetic, a modern root canal procedure is not painful. In fact, it shouldn’t be any more uncomfortable than getting a filling. If you are concerned, our Lancaster dentist can help you relax with dental sedation.
MYTH: Root canals cause health problems like arthritis or cancer.
FACT: Root canals remove a health problem, not cause any.
Around 100 years ago, one dentist published a study saying root canal procedures lead to health problems like arthritis and cancer. He believed removing the infection somehow made it worse. That study was soon debunked, but the myth lingers. To be clear, a root canal will remove the infection. That’s why it makes you healthier, not worse.
MYTH: Root canals make your tooth weak.
FACT: It’s the infection that makes your tooth weak, not the root canal.
A root canal procedure ends with a dental crown placed over the tooth. Some people think that this shows a root canal makes a tooth weaker. Why would you need to strengthen the tooth with a dental crown? Here’s the truth: The infection starves the tooth by attacking the blood vessels in it. This turns the enamel brittle, making that tooth weak. A root canal includes a dental crown because the tooth is weak before the root canal even begins.
Call us TODAY at 661-524-8457 or use our convenient online form to schedule your next appointment. Dr. Boyle is your Lancaster dentist who can use root canals to end your toothache and save that tooth.