Expert, Pain-Free Root Canals in Sebastopol
A root canal treatment is needed when decay or damage has reached the nerve of a tooth. The procedure removes the soft tissue inside a tooth, called pulp, when it has become infected, inflamed, or otherwise diseased. This branch of dentistry is also called endodontics, and is an area where Dr. Grados brings lots of experience.
The words “root canal” often inspire dread or anxiety, but the reality of having a root canal treatment is that the procedure will significantly improve your daily life and oral health. If a root canal is needed, typically the patient is suffering from daily pain, swelling and discomfort. If left untreated, decay or damage of that degree also invariably leads to a tooth extraction, and may even spread to surrounding teeth, gums, or into the jawbone. Root canal therapy is the better option.
When Might You Need Root Canal Treatment?
-Severe tooth decay
-Tenderness to the touch
-Swelling of nearby tissues or local lymph nodes
-Heat and cold sensitivity
-Tooth pain when eating or chewing
-A “pimple-like” fistula (abscessed tooth) on the gum tissue next to the affected tooth that has a lot of decay
-A tooth that has a fracture
We encourage you to contact us to get a complete evaluation and treatment plan. There are some risk factors that can lead to needing a root canal: injury to the tooth, a large cavity or filling, or a crack in the tooth. Treatment depends on the type of problem and what will work best for each patient.
What to Expect with a Root Canal
A root canal treatment procedure does take some time, but is straightforward. The process begins with numbing the area with a local anesthetic. The goal is to remove any dead tissue or decay in the pulp or the tooth itself, cleanse the canals inside the tooth with a disinfectant, seal the canals with gutta percha, then fill the space left behind with either a filling, a dental crown, or some other restorative measure depending on the damage existing in the tooth. The specifics of what restorative treatment is right for you differ for each patient and each tooth. But most commonly, a root canal doesn’t differ widely from a regular filling or crown, and the result is better dental health both now and in the future.
Before any dental procedure, we always make sure the area is thoroughly numb, with the use of a local anesthetic or appropriate sedation. Then, Dr. Grados will make a small opening in the top of the tooth, to reach the infected tooth pulp. The damaged or diseased tissue is removed from the inside, and the root canals are cleaned and sealed against any further damage or decay. Depending on what your treatment plan indicates, we may place a temporary crown or filling on the tooth to protect it until the final restoration is ready. It’s wise to avoid chewing with the treated tooth, however, until the whole treatment is complete.
After a root canal procedure, patients typically can return to regular eating, chewing, smiling and functioning without pain within a short period of time. Some tooth sensitivity after the procedure is normal for a short time, but if pain or sensitivity persists, call your dentist to check in and find out what should be done next.
The treatment preserves natural teeth and saves you from a number of other dental problems in the future. If you have any questions or concerns about a possible root canal, please contact us anytime at Oak Tree Dental. We are happy to help you understand your options and talk with you about the treatment.
Book an appointment.
Meet the Doctors
Dr. Anthony Grados and Dr. Karimeh Shehadeh are a husband and wife team dedicated to making Sebastopol smile. After Dr. Grados completed dental school at NYU and Dr. Shehadeh completed dental school at University of the Pacific, the two met during residency in Brooklyn and married a few years later.
After moving back to California, the two fell in love with Sebastopol and purchased their dental practice. As new Sebastopol residents, they're looking forward to enjoying the area's relaxed pace of life, providing great dental care and forming long-lasting relationships with their patients as they become part of the community.
Book an Appointment Today.