We strive to provide patients with comfortable, compassionate dentistry at All Coast Dental in Pacific Beach. When a patient is facing a serious problem such as infected dental pulp, we’ll provide them with an array of options, favoring conservative interventions before resorting to major ones. Root canal therapy is an aspect of dentistry that may sound drastic, but it’s actually a way of saving teeth that might otherwise have to be extracted. To help our patients get more comfortable with the idea of a root canal, we thought we should explain the principles behind it.
Our teeth contain pulp that is supplied by blood vessels and contains a nerve. Usually, it would be difficult for bacteria to colonize inside the tooth, but they can get in if the tooth is broken or severely decayed from the outside. If that happened, the infection could cause pain or sensitivity, discoloration, and a fever. It may even spread into the base of the tooth root or into the bloodstream. A patient would not be able to treat a pulp infection on their own; instead, the tooth would have to be extracted or undergo a root canal.
During the root canal procedure, the patient is numbed, and if they request it, sedated. The dentist would then drill into the tooth and remove the infected pulp, sealing the empty chamber afterward. Often the tooth undergoing root canal therapy is reshaped and given an artificial crown afterward to preserve its appearance and integrity, while its root is left unaffected. In most cases, this allows the patient to eat and speak normally again, without having to undergo the process of implant placement or loss of jaw bone tissue.
Drs. Julie and Joseph Boulos operate All Coast Dental at 2180 Garnet Ave, Suite 1-K, Pacific Beach, California, 92109. To schedule an appointment, call 858-270-4904 or visit All Coast Dental and fill out a contact sheet.