Getting To The Root Of Root Canals

What Is A Root Canal?

A root canal is the removal of nerves and the replacement of the nerve with sterile filling. Your tooth is made up of many layers. The outside layer is called enamel and is made of minerals. The middle layer is dentin, which is also a calcified tissue, but less dense. The center of the tooth is called the pulp, and that host the nerves and blood vessels. A root canal is the removal and replacement of this center with sterile filling. A root canal is needed when an infection spreads to the center of the tooth. This can be from trauma, a cavity, a severe crack, or other compromises that causes nerve damage. An x-ray and examination are required to see if a root canal is needed. Symptoms may included but are not limited to pain, swelling, change in tooth color, and lingering pain from hot or cold stimulation.

The Process of a Root Canal

When it is time to begin treatment, you’ll receive local anesthesia to make you comfortable. The nerve chamber will be accessed and all of the infected area is removed including the nerve tissue and blood vessels. Then medicines are used to sterilize and alleviate any pain. Next is the placement of a filling material into the space where the nerve was located.

When the nerve and blood supply are removed, the tooth is non-vital, or dead and will become weak and brittle. It is recommended to place a crown on the tooth to keep the tooth from breaking or falling apart. The crown covers the top of the tooth and protect it by strengthening the tooth and preventing breakage.

A root canal saves the tooth that would otherwise be extracted.

Are Your Wisdom Teeth Bothering You?

Do Your Wisdom Teeth Need To Be Removed?

One of the areas we evaluate during your new patient or recall exam is the presence of absence of third molars, more commonly known as “wisdom teeth.” If they are present, have they erupted into oral cavity? If so , we have to evaluate if they are decayed and can the decay be removed and the tooth restored. Some third molars can be restored, but some are not accessible and a recommendation for their removal is made.

Unsure If You Have Third Molars?

Some patients don’t even know they still have third molars. Rarely, an unerupted third molar can fora cyst. If this should occur, it must be removed. This is why a panoramic radiograph of the entire jaw bone must be taken periodically during your exam. If it has been recommended for you to have your wisdom teeth removed, the sooner you have it done the better. The younger you are the easier it is to tolerate the procedure and healing process. If you have a concern about your wisdom teeth, consult with Hendersonville Family Dentistry. An appointment can be made to see our Oral Surgeon that comes into our office once a month.

Stages of Periodontal Disease

Number One Cause Of Tooth Loss.

The number one cause of tooth loss in people over 35 is not tooth decay, The number one cause is periodontal (gum and bone) disease. Approximately 70% of teeth in people aged 35 and older is due to periodontal disease.

Periodontal disease can be classed in three stages.

Stages of Periodontal Disease

The first stage and easiest to treat, is gingivitis. Most of us have a pretty good understanding of what gingivitis is by watching ads on the television and seeing seeing ads in magazines.  Symptoms may include red, tender tissue around the teeth or an individual tooth, bleeding on flossing or brushing, bad breath, and pocket depths measured by your hygienist or dentist of 2-3mm.

The second stage of periodontal disease is progression from gingivitis to a situation where the disease causes increased infection of the gum tissue and now into the small ligaments that go around each tooth, creating a small separation between the tooth and the bone.

The last stage of periodontal disease, is classified as advanced. At this point, what may have been a localized infection around a few teeth results in a worsening of everything mentioned above. The disease is now where it can spread to the other teeth and that may not have been previously affected/infected.

The above is not good news if the disease is not diagnosed or treated. What is good news is that periodontal disease is treatable with great success if identified and treated early. It is very important to see Dr. Harbin or Dr. Jones and even your dental hygienist at Hendersonville Family Dentistry and  follow their recommendations!

Dental Emergencies

Emergencies Can Happen Anytime

Hundreds and thousands of patients safely see their dentist every day. However, emergencies can happen anytime, anyplace and the dental office is no exception. As health professionals, dentist are trained in school to handle medical emergencies. Continuing education courses are available to help them review and remain current with responses to emergencies in office.

You Play an Important Role in Helping Your Dentist

Always tells your dentist about any health conditions you or your child may have including allergies, asthma, diabetes or other trouble maintaining blood sugar levels, blood pressure or heart problems, or any other medical condition even if it seems unimportant or unrelated to dental care. You should also tell your dentist if you are taking any vitamins or supplements.

Dental Implants or Bridgework–Making the Best Choice

Alternatives to Reconsider for a Missing Tooth

When you need to replace a missing tooth, there are two general alternatives to consider. You can choose a traditional bridgework, or select the newer option of dental implants. Both offer a solution that’s reliable, functional, and esthetically pleasing. However, there are a few important differences between the two systems.

Bridge Vs. Dental Implant

A fixed bridge is a dental restoration that’s held in place by attachment to the adjacent natural teeth, which are referred to as abutments. The tooth-replacement section—called pontic spans the gap. Pontics require attachment to the abutments by either a metal frame, or today, a space age porcelain, to the bridge the space from abutment to abutment. The catch is even a single-tooth replacement requires a three-unit bridge and healthy adjacent teeth must be prepared by removing the enamel which increases the risk for a root canal.

A dental implant can be a single tooth replacement system with no effect on healthy adjacent teeth. It involves placing titanium metal implant directly into the living bone of the jaw, in a minor surgical procedure. After a short time, the bone and the implant fuse, and a crown restoration is placed on top to complete the prosthetic tooth system. Dental implants don’t decay, and they’re less likely to lead to gum disease than a natural tooth bridge. They also last longer potentially offering far greater value. Want to know more? Call our office to set up a FREE consultation with Dr. Jones who would love to explain the entire process of dental implants.

How To Determine The Longevity Of Your Teeth

How To Keep Your Teeth For A Lifetime

After learning adequate oral hygiene and how to protect your teeth from para functional habits, the most important thing to do to keep your teeth for a lifetime is to be aware of the importance of what you eat and drink and the medications you take. The most important factor in determining the longevity of your teeth is what you eat and drink. Teeth that are bathed in sugared water, as in soft drinks, can cause tooth loss due to tooth decay in a matter of a few months. Any acid, as in citrus fruits (for example oranges), or hydrochloric acid in the stomach acids can cause severe chemical erosion of your teeth.

Do You Have A Proper Diet?

As we age, our teeth tend to be more resistant to decay if we eat proper diet. Consuming fresh fruits and vegetables not only make your body healthier, but is a natural cleansing agent for the chewing surfaces of your teeth. There is a problem with decay as soon as we have to start taking too many medications that dry up saliva. We can’t stop taking medications, but I recommend that you talk to your dentist if you think your saliva is decreased. The saliva has antibodies that protect both the hard and soft tissues of your mouth. Salivary substitutes are available and it may be advisable to wear custom trays at night to protect your teeth and gums.

The Sooner You Know About Root Canals The Better

What Is A Root Canal?

Recently, has your dentist informed you that you need root canal treatment? Is so you are not alone. Millions of teeth are treated and saved each year with root canal or endodontic treatment. Root canals can relieve your tooth pain and save your smile. A dentist can treat the inside of the tooth, and this is necessary when the pulp inside the tooth becomes inflamed or infected. The inflamed or infection can have a variety of causes; deep decay, repeated dental procedures on the tooth, faulty crowns, or a crack or chip in the tooth.

How Root Canal Treatment Save a Tooth?

During root canal treatment the infected pulp is removed and the inside of the tooth is carefully cleaned and disinfected, and then filled and sealed with a rubber like material. Afterwards the tooth is restored with a crown or filling for protection. After restoration the tooth will continue to function like any other tooth.