A root canal is a dental procedure used to save a natural tooth that has become severely infected or damaged. Whenever possible, Memphis dentist Dr. Elizabeth Lee will recommend performing a root canal to save your natural tooth and avoid tooth extraction. A tooth extraction, although sometimes necessary, can lead to a deterioration of oral health if not addressed promptly with effective tooth replacement.
Root Canals: What To Expect
Modern advances in both technique and materials have made the root canal process more accurate, efficient and less painful. Most patients find the process no more uncomfortable than a typical dental filling. We will explain all aspects of the root canal procedure prior to your treatment to help alleviate any anxiety you may be experiencing.
In most cases, your root canal is completed during one or two visits to our Memphis dentist office. Complicated cases may be referred to a local endodontist. The first step is to ensure that you feel relaxed and comfortable, and local anesthetic will be administered before we begin your procedure.
The next step is to create a small opening near the base of the tooth. This enables Dr. Lee to remove the infected pulp from inside the tooth before cleaning it out and replacing with a biocompatible material. In most cases, the removal of the infection provides immediate pain relief.
The tooth is then sealed to prevent future decay and a dental filling will often be used to complete the process and ensure the tooth is stable and secure. In most cases, we will recommend that you return to our office to place a dental crown over the tooth for long term strength and comfort.
A root canal is an important dental treatment, enabling you to maintain your natural, functional smile.