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Frequently asked questions about root canal therapy

When you have deep decay in a tooth, the infection has possibly reached the pulp. Inflammation of the pulp, nerves, and blood vessels can cause serious symptoms, including severe toothaches. If your dentist finds the same in an X-ray, they may recommend that you go for root canal therapy, also called RCT. This endodontic procedure is highly safe and can help save your infected tooth from extraction. Before visiting a gentle dentist in Floral Park, NY, check a few frequently asked questions about root canal therapy.

How many appointments are required for root canal therapy?

RCT can be completed in one appointment. However, because the required time is significantly longer, your dentist may recommend waiting between sessions to accelerate healing and reduce discomfort. It can take three or more appointments to complete root canal therapy.

Is a crown necessary after root canal therapy?

Once the pulp, nerves, and blood vessels are removed, the tooth becomes hollow and is susceptible to breakage, especially while chewing hard foods. Your dentist will recommend getting a crown as it will help restore the shape, strength, and function of the treated tooth. While you could say no, crowns are necessary after RCT.

What are the steps in root canal therapy?

As the first step, your dentist will use local anesthesia to numb the surrounding gums. Once the tooth is numb, they will create an opening to access the tooth. Using special dental files, your dentist will clean the tooth and remove the pulp, decay, nerves, and blood vessels. If you need to return for a second appointment, they will place a temporary filling. During the next session, the tooth will be cleaned using special cleansing agents to avoid re-infection. Your dentist will then place a permanent filling.

Who needs root canal therapy?

Any patient who has an infected or decayed tooth will need RCT. It is pertinent to know that some patients may not have any symptoms of infection at all, and only when a dentist does an oral exam will they find the extent of the decay and recommend root canal therapy. Watch out for symptoms, such as severe tooth pain, sensitivity, and abscess in gums.

Contrary to popular belief, you will not feel pain during RCT. There might be some discomfort, but the minor side effects usually subside soon after the procedure. Talk to your dentist before you agree to root canal therapy.

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