Boulder Dentist Serving Denver, Ft. Collins & Nearby Areas in Colorado
When you need root canal therapy, our experienced dentist Dr. Michael Adler can determine if there are any alternatives available to you and help you decide the best course of action to restore your oral health. Root canal therapy is sometimes necessary to save a tooth that is badly decayed, but the only way to know the status of your tooth health is to visit an experienced general dentist for an evaluation. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Adler, please complete our contact form or call us at 303-449-1119.
How Root Canal Therapy Can Benefit Your Oral Health
Root canal therapy is sometimes the best option, and in other cases you may be able to avoid root canal treatment or seek an alternative. This treatment is typically recommended if a tooth infection is advanced and threatening the tooth. Root canal therapy is sometimes the only way to avoid losing an infected tooth.
Advanced tooth decay typically occurs when a cavity progresses through the tooth, reaching into the nerve and pulp tissue contained inside of your root canals. When this advanced decay is left untreated and unstopped, then your tooth may develop an abscess and the tooth may even die, which could lead to tooth loss. The root canal treatment removes the decay, cleans the root canals and saves as much of the remaining tooth structure as possible. To sum it up, the benefits of root canal treatment in certain scenarios include:
- Stops the advancement of infection
- Saves the nerves of the tooth
- May help you avoid extraction of the tooth
Although root canal treatments have a reputation for being painful, scary experiences, they are actually quite the opposite. Modern root canal therapy does not cause any pain during the procedure, and it can be completed relatively quickly and easily. Dr. Adler is extensively experienced in this and other dental health procedures.
"Over the last three years I have had regular cleanings, cavity fillings, crowns, a fibroma lasered off my gum, a huge complicated incredibly infected root canal done and tooth saved! My mouth is almost completely caught up from a decade of missing my brother, my dentist back home in Indiana. I had two other dentists for the decade before I found Dr. Adler and had grown afraid of major work. But not anymore! All of the work Dr. Adler has done has been successful and looks and feels great! I am happy to have found a forever dentist for my myself and my family. I trust Dr. Adler completely based on his consistent standards of excellence. Everybody that works in the office is so nice! I love going to the dentist now, finally!"
What Happens During A Root Canal?
The first step is to remove all of the infected nerve tissue and pulp within the root canal. Then, Dr. Adler will clean out the tooth to make sure it is sterilized and that all of the infectious material is eliminated. He will then seal the cleaned root canal. A dental crown is used to restore the full shape and structure of the tooth. Our dental crowns look just like your natural teeth, so you can feel confident every time you smile.
Why Would I Need a Root Canal?
Dr. Adler may recommend a root canal for you if you have suffered a deep cavity in which extensive decay has affected the innermost area of a tooth. In this instance, the pulp and nerves can suffer irreparable damage, resulting in ongoing pain until the nerves (and the tooth) die. You may need a root canal if a tooth has been treated repeatedly for advanced tooth decay, or if a tooth has cracked or broken and there is a strong risk of infection in the pulp chamber.
Will I Be in Pain After My Root Canal?
It's interesting how all aspects of root canal treatment are believed to be painful. In reality, the only thing painful about a root canal is the intense toothache that sends you to our Boulder office in the first place. Neither your procedure nor your recovery should be painful. Will you have some soreness? Most likely, but this minor discomfort will be far less than what you experienced before your treatment. After undergoing your procedure, you can soothe the inflammation around the tooth by rinsing the mouth with warm salty water one or two times a day. You can also take ibuprofen or acetaminophen as directed to manage post-treatment soreness or tenderness.
Another way to ensure that your recovery from root canal treatment is as comfortable as possible is to reduce the amount of chewing you do. For a few days, eat foods that are softer. Eating eggs, soups, yogurt, pudding, soft pasta, and soft-cooked vegetables can protect the treatment area from disturbance. Within a few days, you should be able to very comfortably resume your normal eating habits.
How Long Will it Take to Recover After Root Canal Treatment?
When your root canal procedure is complete, the tooth is in the best environment to heal efficiently. All infection and decay have been removed, and the root canals have been sealed to prevent the entry of bacteria or debris. The temporary crown that's affixed over the tooth at the end of the procedure protects it from further damage. Now, it's time to just let your body engage in its repair process to reduce minor swelling and soreness. This usually doesn't take longer than a week. You don't have to arrange time off work for your root canal recovery. Simply going home to rest after your appointment should be sufficient. You may feel well enough to return to work as soon as the day after your procedure, taking precautions with your diet and pain management.
Is There an Alternative to Root Canal Therapy?
If a tooth has sustained significant damage due to an injury or decay, the only alternative to root canal therapy is to pull the tooth. This is not a course of action most dentists like to take because pulling a tooth requires further action to avoid other damaging effects. If we have to pull a tooth because it's no longer viable and cannot withstand chewing, it is imperative that we then replace it. So, if you want to forego a root canal, the option would be to pull the tooth and insert a dental bridge or implant.