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What You Need to Know Before Having a Root Canal

Posted on 10/30/2016 by Beautiful Smiles Office
An elderly woman about to receive a root canal from her dentist.
If you've suffered a crack or decay in your tooth, you may be at risk for, or already have, an infection. An infection in your tooth can quickly become a big problem, spreading into your jawbone and then into your blood stream.

Once there, the infection can travel throughout your body, causing severe health problems, such as heart disease or stroke. To prevent the spread of infection, your dentist may suggest a root canal. Here are some things you should know before your procedure.

What is a Root Canal?

A root canal is a procedure used to preserve an at risk tooth, rather than extracting it. First, you are administered a local anesthetic, which numbs the area, making the process painless. Then, the dentist drills a small hole in your tooth and removes the pulp of the tooth as well as the root. The inside of the tooth is cleaned and disinfected and then filled with a synthetic material. The tooth is then sealed with a crown, which keeps out bacteria and strengthens the tooth.

You Will Require a Second Visit
After your tooth is prepared for a crown (ground down to allow room for the crown to fit comfortably over it), an impression is taken of it to prepare your customized crown. The crown is created in a lab, which will take some time. Until it is ready, your dentist will give you a temporary crown. Once your actual crown is ready, you will have to go back to the office to have it cemented in place.

Pain After the Procedure is Normal
Some pain is normal, and to be expected after a root canal. Most pain is easily managed by over the counter pain medications. You can talk to your dentist about a prescription for a stronger medication if you need.

Oral Hygiene

Once you've had a root canal, that doesn't mean your tooth is impervious to new decay. It is still just as important to brush your teeth at least twice a day, floss and visit the dentist regularly to ensure that your teeth remain healthy and strong.

A root canal is a relatively simple procedure that can save your mouth, and the rest of your body, from a lot of harm. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to contact our office.
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Beautiful Smiles
James Yang, DDS

255 W Court St., Suite E Woodland,
CA 95695-2986

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