Restore your infected tooth
with root canal therapy
If you have a toothache that won’t go away in Del Mar, you may have an infected tooth, and need root canal therapy from Dr. Todd Pizzi at Del Mar Dental Studio. With a root canal, you can eliminate your pain and discomfort, preserve your smile, and prevent further complications related to a tooth infection. Learn more below, or contact us now for an appointment.
Signs that you need
a root canal
The most common sign that you may need a root canal is a painful toothache that persists for more than 1-2 days. This toothache is caused by the infection of the nerve-filled “pulp” that keeps your tooth alive.
You may also notice sensitivity and pain when chewing, or when consuming very hot or cold foods or drinks. The tooth may also become discolored, or you may notice discoloration of the surrounding gum tissue.
If you have a fever or notice major swelling of your face and gums, you definitely have a seriously infected tooth, and need to get help from Del Mar Dental Studio right away. This is because, in some cases, the infection could spread throughout your face and neck, which can be life-threatening.
What to expect
The root canal Process
First, Dr. Todd Pizzi will clean your mouth and numb the treatment area for your comfort. You can also be sedated during the root canal process, if you wish. Next, Dr. Pizzi will begin the treatment by using a dental drill to trim away damaged enamel, and creating a small hole in the top of the tooth.
Through this opening, Dr. Pizzi will use a variety of special dental tools to extract decayed pulp and tooth material, removing the bacteria that caused your tooth infection. Then, the tooth will be flushed and sanitized to kill any remaining bacteria.
After this, the tooth will be filled with a rubber-like material called “gutta-percha.” This replaces the missing pulp, and strengthens the inside of your tooth. Finally, Dr. Pizzi will restore your tooth with a filling or a temporary dental crown. You may need to come back to Del Mar Dental Studio for a separate appointment to get a permanent crown.
Recovering from treatment
the root canal healing process
There is no prolonged healing period after you get a root canal. Your tooth will be restored immediately. It may feel a bit tender for a few days, but you can get back to your normal diet and day-to-day routine immediately.
However, you should contact Dr. Pizzi for a followup if your tooth starts to hurt a lot, or if you experience pain and tenderness that lasts for 2+ weeks or longer.
are root canals painful?
SEPARATING Fact from fiction
Root canals have a reputation for being very painful, thanks to popular culture. But in reality, this could not be further from the truth. Root canals from Dr. Todd Pizzi at Del Mar Dental Studio are completely pain-free.
Your procedure will be done under local anesthesia, and you can even be sedated to help with discomfort and anxiety. You won’t feel a thing, so you can get the dental care you need without fear.
Is A Root Canal right for you?
Am I A Good Candidate For A Root Canal?
A good candidate for root canal therapy would be someone who has tooth decay that is extensive enough that it has penetrated to the tooth’s dental pulp, causing inflammation or an infection.
However, it should not be so severe that the tooth cannot be salvaged. If tooth decay is left untreated for too long, it can spread to the other teeth and your tooth may need to be extracted.
Symptoms that suggest you need a root canal include:
- Tooth pain
- Sensitivity of the tooth that lingers after consuming something hot or cold
- Abscess near the affected tooth
- Swelling around the tooth and in the face
- Tooth discoloration
- Exposed nerve
Root Canal Aftercare
What Can I Eat After A Root Canal?
The aftercare process following a root canal is fairly straightforward. However, we recommend that you avoid eating or consuming hot liquids until the anesthetic has fully worn off. Your mouth will remain numb for several hours after your root canal, which can put you at risk of accidental injury from biting or burning the inside of your mouth.
Once your mouth is no longer numb, you can eat, but you will have some ground rules to follow for the first 24 hours:
- Only eat soft foods
- Avoid hot foods and drinks
- Try to chew on the other side of your mouth
- Avoid hard, sticky, and chewy foods
- Avoid spicy foods
Root Canal Aftercare
Root Canal Vs Extraction: Which Is Best?
Whenever you have the opportunity to restore the health of your tooth, we recommend that you pursue that option. Your teeth are incredibly important to your oral health and facial development.
While sometimes an extraction is necessary, it should never be seen as an elective procedure chosen out of convenience. Let’s make one thing clear - there is nothing convenient about unnecessarily losing a tooth.
It will cause irreversible bone loss that changes your facial structure and leads to premature facial sagging. You will need to undergo treatments for a tooth replacement to prevent your teeth from shifting and causing orthodontic problems.
In the long run, having an extraction will cost you more time and money than simply getting a root canal, which is a minimally invasive, painless, and highly successful procedure. A root canal prevents infection from spreading to other teeth or even worse, spreading through your bloodstream, where it can go to your brain or cause a fatal case of sepsis.
Root canals have a 95% success rate at saving a tooth from extraction and curing tooth infections. While in rare cases, tooth decay is too extensive and the tooth cannot be restored with a root canal, we always recommend going down the route of saving the tooth when possible.
At your consultation, we will be able to see the extent of the decay and if the tooth can be saved. Your natural teeth maintain your smile and help you speak and eat, which is something you don’t want to take for granted.