When you are facing a dental procedure, it is normal to feel a bit of anxiety. If your dentist has recently diagnosed you with a dental issue that requires a root canal, you may be feeling overwhelmed. Root canals have a very negative stigma. Many people believe that this procedure is one of the most painful. Well, at Premier Dental Center in Bulverde, we are happy to tell you that the root canals your grandparents had are not the same as today! In fact, we can perform root canals with relatively little pain. You may have a few questions before the procedure, and if so, then you’re in the right spot.
What is a Root Canal and Why Do I Need One?
A root canal is a procedure performed when the pulp, the soft-tissued substance underneath the enamel of a tooth, becomes infected. This soft tissue is full of small blood vessels, nerves, and connective tissue – which is what makes it incredibly sensitive when it becomes infected or inflamed. This can happen due to a number of things. Genetics, recent gum infection, tooth decay, broken or cracked tooth, or deep cavity all can be reasons for needing a root canal.
During a root canal procedure, the endodontist or dentist will remove the infected pulp or soft tissue and then clean the inside of the damaged tooth. Once complete, the tooth is then filled, similar to a cavity filling treatment, and seal it to prevent further infection.
Why Won’t They Just Extract the Tooth?
While it may seem a lot simpler to just remove the entire infected tooth along with all the pulp in one fell swoop, it actually isn’t. A root canal, while the process of removing the infection seems lengthy, is often a short, one appointment procedure. After a root canal, a person may feel better within one day and be able to continue using their natural tooth with limited or no further dental treatment. When tooth extraction is performed, not only is the healing time longer and the chances of infection greater, but the person will need to have further restorative dental procedures to replace the extracted tooth, either with an implant or bridge.
Is a Root Canal Painful?
A root canal can cause discomfort, but nothing compared to what it was even 20 years ago. With new, modern dental techniques combined with sedation and pain management, most people will not experience much more than slight discomfort during the procedure. Again, because the healing time is fast, most patients can manage pain post-op with over-the-counter medications.
How Expensive is a Root Canal?
The cost of a root canal can vary depending on the severity of the tooth infection and how long it takes a dentist to remove the infected portions. If a molar is the one in need of a root canal, it can be more expensive due to size and location. Please talk with our financial specialists to learn about our payment options.
Choose a Trusted Dental Professional
The best way to alleviate anxiety during a dental procedure is to choose a dentist that you trust. Read the reviews, research the websites, and meet the doctor. If you have additional questions about root canals or other dental procedures – or if you are due for any dental treatments, please schedule an appointment today! Our team is committed to your overall oral health. We look forward to meeting you.