Root Canal Therapy in Cockeysville

Root canal therapy may be necessary if you have a seriously infected tooth. Only an experienced dentist can tell you if a root canal can save your tooth. Root canal symptoms, or signs you may need a root canal include:

  • Serious tooth pain when eating or biting down
  • Long-lasting tooth sensitivity/pain reaction to hot or cold food or beverages
  • Darkening of the tooth
  • Extreme tenderness of the gums near the tooth that hurts

What is a Root Canal?

The term root canal refers to both a physical structure in your mouth — the inner part of the tooth between the pulp and tooth roots, as well as the dental procedure to relieve your pain and remove the infection. The pain you feel is from the infection. The dental procedure itself is painless.

Several factors can contribute to a root canal infection, including:

  • Severe tooth decay
  • Damage to the tooth including cracks or chips
  • Trauma to the tooth

The Root Canal Procedure

The root canal procedure consists of several steps, where your dentist removes the infected tooth pulp from your tooth, and then seals it to protect it from future infection. This may require two appointments. Your dental x-rays will determine the extent of the infection, and your dentist will use these to help guide the procedure. Here are the steps you can expect at your appointment(s):

  1. Numbing the area. You will receive a local anesthetic to ensure you do not feel any pain during the procedure.
  2. Removing the infected pulp and nerve tissue. The dentist will drill an access hole into your tooth and use special dental instruments to remove the cause of your tooth pain.
  3. Closing out. Once the dentist has removed the infected tissues, they will either seal the tooth the same day, or put in a temporary filling until your permanent crown is ready.
  4. Placement of a crown or permanent filling. Once all the infected material has completely drained from the tooth, the dentist will place a permanent crown or filling to protect your tooth from future infection. This may be a few days after your initial appointment.

Avoiding a Root Canal

You can avoid a root canal by taking good care of your teeth. That means brushing at least twice a day with fluoride toothpaste, flossing or using a dental pick, and visiting your dentist for teeth cleaning twice a year. It also means getting cavities filled when they are first discovered. This will prevent the damage to your tooth from getting worse. Call us today at 410-666-9266 to schedule your appointment.