Root canal treatment, sometimes referred to as endodontic therapy, is a routine procedure that is done to remove the inner portions of a tooth to address problems impacting the smile that can otherwise only be treated by permanent extraction. Drs. Scott A. Babin and Anne Mazure-Schmidt in Edmonds and Renton, Washington, provide this procedure when necessary. If you are in need of root canal therapy, our team can walk you through the process so you know what to expect, including how long the root canal treatment will last and how to take care of the teeth after the procedure has been performed.
The procedure itself involves numbing the area to ensure your comfort, then removing infected tissues and cleaning out diseased canals. In some instances, a root canal may require more than one visit in order to completely remove all infected tissue and bacteria. The dentist will use specialized tools and instruments that are designed specifically for this purpose.
Root canal procedures can take anywhere from one to two hours, depending on the complexity of your individual case. After the procedure is completed, Drs. Scott A. Babin and Anne Mazure-Schmidt may then recommend the fabrication and placement of a dental crown. This “cap” made of porcelain is designed to offer an extra protective layer of strength for the natural tooth structure remaining after endodontic therapy. The treatment can leave teeth weak and brittle, ultimately more susceptible to further damage if not protected with a crown or other porcelain repair.
Most patients will have mild discomfort in the treated area for a day or two after their procedure, though this is often well-managed with over-the-counter pain medication. Our team of professionals will provide you with aftercare instructions to follow closely to ensure the procedure is successful! This may include paying close attention to the area and calling the dentist if there are any signs of pain, continued bleeding, or symptoms of infection.
In some instances, certain dental issues may have more than one solution. However, root canal therapy is often performed as a last resort before permanently removing a natural tooth. We prefer patients to maintain as many natural teeth as possible, so root canal therapy is an option for patients to consider to preserve the tooth in the smile and protect it from damage that may otherwise require extraction.
Whether you have an infected nerve in your tooth or an extremely large cavity that has impacted the dental pulp of a tooth, our team at Scott A. Babin, DDS, and Associates can help!