If you are no stranger to constant nagging toothaches, twinging when you bite down, or swelling in and around your gum line, it is critical to see a dentist right away.
When these symptoms are combined with extreme sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures, a low-grade fever, and a damaged tooth that is either cracked or has deep cavity decay, it indicates that you have what is known as a root infection or tooth abscess.
If left untreated, a root infection will spread to other areas of the mouth causing further damage to the tooth, bone, and gums around it.
Read on to find out what type of treatment options are available for root infections.
What Are The Treatment Options for Root Infections?
The traditional recommendation from dentists for root infections is either a root canal treatment or a full tooth extraction with a dental implant procedure.
- Root Canal Treatment: with a standard root canal treatment, your tooth’s infected pulp is exposed and removed using special tools called files. Once the pulp is removed, the canals or pathways in your teeth are carefully cleaned and the area will be coated with a topical antibiotic to help prevent reinfection. The tooth will then be sealed and a temporary filling will be made to protect the sealed channels from saliva. You will be asked to come back for an inspection after a week or two and if the infection is gone, a permanent filling will be given. Your dentist may also recommend a crown. Permitting that the structure of your tooth is sound and no reinfections occur is the best route for saving your natural tooth.
- Tooth Extraction With Dental Implants: if the damage to your tooth is so severe that there isn’t enough remaining tooth to hold a crown or not all the bacteria can be removed during a root canal process, a tooth extraction with dental implants is often recommended. Your tooth would be completely extracted, then a metal post would be inserted into the jaw, and a porcelain crown would be fixed to the post to mimic your natural tooth. This procedure is more expensive than a root canal, and it doesn’t save your natural tooth.
Why Try to Save a Natural Tooth?
It is important to try to save your natural tooth as it limits the need for expensive, ongoing dental work, and it ensures that you keep your face’s natural shape and appearance. It also helps maintain normal biting forces, bone structure, and chewing capabilities.
Is There an Alternative Treatment Option Available?
If you have a root infection and want to save your natural tooth but are unable to have a standard root canal treatment, there is an alternative root canal therapy option available called GentleWave. It is a minimally invasive procedure that uses multi-sonic ultra cleaning technology to flush procedure fluids through your tooth’s complex root canal anatomy.
This allows the dentist to reach the deepest portions of your teeth’ roots where the files of a standard root canal cannot reach.
It eliminates the majority of instruments needed to clear the infection, it is more comfortable than a standard root canal, and it can save more of your natural tooth. And the bonus, it can typically be done in just one appointment.
If you’d like to come for a dental visit and/or have any questions, feel free to get in touch today.