One of the procedures dental patients dread is the root canal. Dr. Mojgan Hashemi of Los Robles Dental Plaza in Thousand Oaks, California, performs root canals where much of the pain you feel results from the injury, not the treatment. The term “root canal” refers to the void in a tooth in which the central pulp tissue resides. When this tissue suffers damage or inflammation, Dr. Hashemi may replace it with inert material — the root canal process. Book online or call today for an appointment to learn more about the root canal procedure.
Anything that causes damage to or infects tooth pulp may make a root canal necessary. This might be a cracked or broken tooth, or one with previous fillings that have failed. Sometimes the pulp is damaged even when there’s no sign on the enamel. Pulp inflammations and infections may result in an abscess at the base of your tooth.
Some of the symptoms that may indicate a problem that warrants a root canal procedure include:
It’s also possible that problems may develop without symptoms, another reason why regular dental checkups with Dr. Hashemi are important to catch such problems before they get worse.
When Dr. Hashemi decides a root canal is necessary, she gives you a local anesthetic to prevent further pain. For many patients, this is where the worst pain of a root canal ends. If you feel anything at all after this point, it’s usually a dull ache that you can treat with over-the-counter pain relievers. Dr. Hashemi advises you on post-procedure care.
An opening in the crown of your tooth permits access to the pulp chamber and root canals. Dr. Hashemi removes all pulp tissue, then cleans and shapes the interior of the tooth in preparation for filling. Typically, she places a temporary filling over the opening after packing the hollow areas of your tooth. Afterward, Dr. Hashemi’s staff will schedule a return visit so she can check your progress and put a permanent filling in place.
In some cases, Dr. Hashemi may recommend a crown or other restoration to protect the tooth and return it to its full function.
During the temporary filling phase, you should avoid chewing on that side of your mouth. Once your root canal is complete, the tooth needs the same care as the rest of your teeth, including brushing and flossing. Regular dental visits assure the condition and progress of the repaired tooth.