Dental Tips Blog

Oct
16

What Makes My Teeth So Sensitive?

Posted in Root Canals

Dental hypersensitivity can have a number of causes. A combination of factors, in some cases. To figure out what’s going on with your teeth, it helps to get a little background info.

Anatomy Of A Sensitive Tooth

All teeth have hollow chambers in their centers. These spaces are filled with blood vessels and loads of nerves. The nerves pick up on temperatures via fluid-filled pores that fill the dentin (middle layer). These pores are insulated on the outside by the outer layer, the enamel. Enamel only covers the top portion of the tooth that’s visible when you smile. Tooth roots don’t have that protection.

How Teeth Get Sensitive

Those tiny nerves in teeth become more exposed to the outside world through two main ways:

  • Enamel is compromised
  • Roots are exposed

Enamel can be damaged or worn via acid erosion, fracture, decay, or simply years of use. Sensitive roots can be exposed as a result of orthodontic treatment, a bad bite, aggressive tooth brushing, or gum inflammation. Some other possible causes of sensitivity include getting a new filling, losing all or part of a restoration, and receiving a blow to your tooth.

What You Can Do About Sensitivity

You may be able to pinpoint a specific area of sensitivity. Or maybe not! It’s possible to suffer this complaint in a generalized way. Start out by taking your meals and drinks neither too hot nor too cold. Switch to a fluoride-rich desensitizing toothpaste to fortify your enamel.

Most importantly, see your dentist ASAP. Some sensitivity can indicate a serious nerve problem that requires root canal therapy. Whatever the case, you’ll get some practical advice and suggestions to help you get relief!

Posted on behalf of:
Montevallo Family Dentistry
711 Wadsworth St
Montevallo, AL 35115
(205) 665-2224

Oct
8

3 Signs You Will Probably Need a Root Canal

Posted in Root Canals

A root canal is a procedure in which a dentist empties a tooth of bacteria and a dying nerve. Doing so heads off a potentially dangerous infection, relieves pain, and saves your tooth to avoid an extraction.

If you notice any of the following problems with your teeth, there’s a possibility you might need a root canal:

  1. Discoloration

A dark-colored tooth can indicate that there is nerve damage on the inside. Darkening could be a result of either trauma or decay. Some teeth change color after an injury but don’t always need root canal treatment. If your tooth starts to turn gray or brown, it’s a good idea to get it checked out.

  1. Swelling/Pus

When a tooth’s nerve starts to break down, the infection will try to escape the tooth. The only way out is through the channel that leads out the root tip. The infection then invades the surrounding bone tissue and eats away a small hole. As a result, you can end up with an oozing abscess on your gums near the tip of your root.

  1. Temperature And Pressure Sensitivity

If you have one tooth in particular that you can’t even chew on, then its nerve could be in jeopardy. An infection inside the tooth will put a lot of pressure on it from the inside, making it extremely sensitive.

See your dentist anytime you suspect something is off. But a dangerous nerve problem can crop up painlessly. That’s why it’s so important that you visit your dentist on a regular basis. This is how you stay on top of dental problems and anticipate the need for treatment such as root canals.

Posted on behalf of:
Greencastle Dental
195 Greencastle Road
Tyrone, GA 30290
(770) 486-5585

Sep
29

Will I Need a Root Canal if I Have My Crown Re-done?

Posted in Root Canals

Maybe your dentist suggested that you update your crown. Or, perhaps you want to change it out because you’re unhappy with the look.

Dental crowns are wonderful things. They protect a tooth from all angles and restore its strength that may have been lost to decay or a fracture. But anytime a tooth is capped, it loses a bit of its structure. That’s just the way it is in order to properly fit a crown.

Whenever an old crown is replaced, there is a small chance that the tooth may need root canal (endodontic therapy). Root canals are separate (though often related) procedures in relation to crowns. You need a crown after getting a root canal, but you don’t always need endodontic therapy when getting a dental crown.

A root canal is a procedure in which your dentist removes the nerve from inside the roots of your tooth. Root canals sound scary, but they aren’t that bad. If anything, they usually bring relief to a tooth in pain.

There are three main reasons you may need root canal treatment after having an old crown removed:

  1. There is advanced decay infecting the tooth under the crown
  2. The tooth’s nerve chamber is breached during the process of getting a new crown
  3. There is so little tooth structure left that breaching the nerve chamber is virtually inevitable

If any of those situations apply to you, there’s little you can do to anticipate it. You’ll have to visit your dentist for x-rays and an exam to see how your current crown is holding up.

Posted on behalf of:
Memorial Park Dental Spa
6010 Washington Ave Suite D
Houston, TX 77007
(713) 336-8478

Sep
27

3 Signs You Need a Root Canal

Posted in Root Canals

“I love getting root canals!”…said no one, ever.

But despite their bad rap, root canals today are far more comfortable than in years past. In fact, most people who’ve gotten a root canal will assert that it was nowhere near as bad as they expected.

Today’s dentistry is making root canals faster, more effective, and more comfortable every year.

If you wind up needing endodontic therapy, be assured that it won’t feel much different from getting a regular filling.

So why might you need a root canal, anyway? Here are three things you yourself may notice which could indicate the necessity of such treatment:

  1. Lingering pain and sensitivity

An abscessed tooth will usually present itself with a lot of pain. You may notice discomfort particularly when you put pressure on the tooth, such as when biting.

Temperature can trigger sensitivity even in healthy teeth. But if your tooth throbs for a while after the temperature stimulus is gone, that could be a sign of an infected tooth nerve that needs root canal treatment.

  1. Your tooth is turning dark

When the nerve chamber inside your tooth gets damaged, it can turn dark as it dies. A root canal is the best option for removing the dead tissue and staving off infection.

  1. Swelling on your gums

A pimple-like bump on the outside of your gums next to a tooth could be the exit point of an abscess that needs a root canal.

Only an experienced dentist could tell you for sure whether or not you need a root canal. So call to schedule a checkup if you suspect any dental problems.

Posted on behalf of:
Alluvial Dental Center
1875 E Alluvial Ave
Fresno, CA 93720
559-325-0700

Aug
3

What is an Abscess?

Posted in Root Canals

“Abscess” is that scary “A-word” no one likes to hear at the dental office! The infection occurs when the tissues inside a tooth becomes inflamed from bacteria that enter the sterile nerve chamber. The infection can’t escape through the hard tooth structure, so instead, it travels through the root tips and out the side of your jaw.

If the abscess isn’t relieved and treated, it can cause severe damage to other teeth and the infection can even travel to other areas in your body.

Signs Of An Abscess

  • Swelling around your tooth
  • Throbbing pain
  • Temperature sensitivity
  • Tenderness to biting pressure
  • Fever
  • Pimple on the gums next to a tooth
  • An noticeable salty taste or smell in your mouth

Sometimes, you can have an abscess and not feel anything. This is one of the reasons regular dental checkups with x-rays are so important!

Think You Have a Dental Abscess? What You Should Do

Call your local dentist right away. Take a doctor-approved painkiller. Place an ice pack on the side of your face if you have any swelling. Your dentist will see you at the earliest opportunity since abscesses can’t wait! Visit the emergency room if you have difficulty swallowing or breathing.

Treatment For An Abscess

When you get to your dentist’s, he or she will likely prescribe you an antibiotic to reduce the number of bacteria present. If the damage is severe enough, the abscessed tooth may need to be extracted. In many cases, a tooth can be saved with root canal therapy.

If you suspect you have an abscess, don’t wait! The sooner you take action, the greater your chances of keeping your tooth.

Posted on behalf of :
Prime Dental Care
417 Wall St
Princeton, NJ 08540
(609) 651-8618

Jun
28

Can I Sleep Through My Root Canal?

Posted in Root Canals

If you’ve never had a root canal before, then you might be a little anxious about getting one now.

In years past, root canals were supposedly known as long and painful procedures. How has today’s modern dentistry approach changed the procedure?

You Won’t Feel A Thing

Anesthesia has evolved to include several classes of medications for numbing teeth. Although many people know anesthesia as “Novocaine,” numbing injections also include prilocaine, lidocaine, carbocaine, articaine, mepivacaine, and more.

A couple of long-lasting shots may be all you need.

You really shouldn’t feel a thing. Today’s dentists know that anxiety in the dental chair is not good for the patient. That’s why they work hard to make sure everyone is comfortable while getting the treatment they need.

Dental Sedation During Root Canal Therapy

Despite assurances that you’ll be comfortable during your root canal, you may have a hard time convincing yourself of that fact. Not to worry – dental sedation could help you out here.

With a little medication taken just a couple hours before treatment, you could essentially sleep your way through the process.

Dental sedation lowers your awareness but doesn’t put you completely under. You’ll feel very relaxed and drowsy. It’s possible that you could doze off on your own. Even if you don’t sleep, you will be at ease during treatment and probably won’t remember much afterwards.

Is Dental Sedation Right For You?

Talk with your dentist well before your root canal appointment. Ask him or her about what options are available to you and which would be the most effective.

Call your dentist today for more information.

Posted on behalf of:
The Newport Beach Dentist
1901 Westcliff Drive #6
Newport Beach, CA 92660
(949) 646-2481

Jun
9

Can You Get a Cavity After A Root Canal?

Posted in Root Canals

A root canal is when your dentist takes out the nerve of a tooth and replaces it with a filling material. Doing this can either relieve an infection or prevent one from happening.

After your root canal, your tooth shouldn’t have any more sensation. It’s protected by a strong crown, and will continue to work like any other tooth.

Your tooth with the root canal also has the same risk of getting a cavity, just like any other tooth. Why? Because bacteria can leak in at the margin where the crown meets the tooth. But does it really matter now that it no longer has a nerve?

Cavity After A Root Canal – Why Dangerous?

You know how cavities can get really sensitive? Because a tooth with a root canal is no longer alive, you probably won’t feel anything if that tooth gets a cavity.

If you don’t feel the decay and can’t see it because it’s under the crown, it can continue until your tooth is too damaged to even support a crown.

You got the root canal to preserve your natural tooth, but once decay takes over, you may have to get it pulled, anyway.

Protect Your Root Canal

Have you recently had a root canal? Congratulations on getting that out of the way!

But don’t forget that your work is far from over.

Make sure you brush and floss each tooth daily, even the ones with root canals. Visit your dentist regularly for x-rays and exams so that you can keep a close eye on how that root canal is holding up.

Posted on behalf of:
Dream Dentist
1646 W U.S. 50
O’Fallon, IL 62269
(618) 726-2699

Jan
30

Root Canal Therapy – What Is It?

Posted in Root Canals

A “root canal” affects the inside of your tooth’s root, which contains a channel of nerves and blood supply.

When a cavity or fracture gets too deep, this can trigger an infection in the pulp of your tooth. The bacteria travel down the canal to escape the tooth, resulting in an abscess along the tip of the root.

At this point, your tooth can never be completely clean and strong on its own. Your dentist will recommend root canal therapy (RCT) to remove the infection and seal off the nerve chamber.

What to Expect From a Root Canal Procedure

Your dentist will first take an x-ray to determine the extent of the cavity. After careful treatment planning, the dentist will administer anesthesia and open up a small hole through the top of your tooth. He or she will use a file to reach as deep into the root to remove infected tissues.

The next step is cleaning and shaping the root canal with special tools and irrigators. Once that’s done, it’s time to pack the empty spaces with a filling material that helps guard against the roots developing another infection.

Finally, your tooth will need a crown to protect it, as the loss of the nerve can weaken its structure.

Does RCT Hurt?

You might be surprised to learn that having a root canal doesn’t hurt any more than getting a filling.

Sure, root canals come with a reputation for pain, but the untreated infection is one of the biggest reasons why. You now have access to multiple options and medication for making your dental procedures as comfortable as you please.

Do you suspect you need root canal therapy? Contact your dentist for more information and to schedule an evaluation.

Posted on behalf of:
Nautical Dental
16414 San Pedro Ave #200
San Antonio, TX 78232
(210) 499-0009

Dec
6

Why Do I Need a Root Canal?

Posted in Root Canals

If your tooth has suffered from recent trauma, a fracture, or damaged by a very large cavity…it probably needs a root canal.

Let’s talk a bit about your tooth anatomy to see why a root canal (endodontic treatment) might be necessary instead of a filling…

Your Tooth – There’s More Than Meets the Eye

The crown of the tooth is the part you can see above your gum tissue. The outer enamel layer protects the body of the tooth which is made of sensitive dentin. Inside the dentin is hollow – it’s a chamber filled with nerves and blood vessels that extend into the roots and jaw.

When the protective outer layers are damaged, the delicate inner chamber can become infected. This leads to an abscess, pain, and infection. If damage is too severe, your tooth may need to be extracted.

What a Root Canal Does

First, your dentist removes damaged tooth surfaces and the nerve inside of your tooth. The nerve chamber is sterilized and filled with a special material to seals out infection. Finally, the tooth receives a crown to reinforce it for everyday wear.

What You Need to Do

See your dentist immediately if you notice signs of nerve damage, such as:

  • Temperature sensitivity
  • Pain
  • Tenderness and swelling around a tooth
  • A discharge or funny taste
  • Change in color of the enamel

The tricky thing is that your tooth could be in grave danger and you might not feel any symptoms at all. Routine dental checkups are important to screen for problems while they’re easier to treat.

Start by visiting your dentist every six months. If he or she doesn’t provide root canals in their office, they will partner with an endodontist who does.

Posted on behalf of:
Cane Bay Family Dentistry
1724 State Rd #4D
Summerville, SC 29483
(843) 376-4157

Jan
27

3 Signs Your Tooth May Be Dying

Posted in Root Canals

Are you having pain in your tooth?  Maybe your tooth is starting to turn darker than the others?  It could be that you are experiencing a dying tooth.

What is a dying tooth?  Each tooth has its own, living nerve inside of it. When the nerve dies, has been traumatized, or has been removed in a root canal procedure, your tooth is considered non-vital or “dead.”  How do you know if your tooth is dying?

Here are 3 signs and symptoms:

1)      Pain– You may not always have tooth pain but in some cases you may.  The type of pain can vary from a mild, occasional pain to extremely painful.  Some people don’t experience pain at all!

2)      Darker tooth – The colors can vary from shades of grey, yellow or black.  This is a like a bruise in your tooth.  You will be able to tell by comparing the tooth to the ones next to it.

3)      A “pimple” on your gums – An abscessed tooth causes a “pimple” along your gums to release inflammation.  This can give you a bad taste or a foul odor in your mouth.

These are just a few symptoms of dying teeth. Seeing your dentist regularly can help you prevent problems like these before they progress to the point of irreversible damage.

Do you think your tooth is infected and possibly dying?  Call your dentist today to have your examined and tested to see if it is the case.  If your tooth is in fact dying, it will need to be treated by either a root canal or be extracted to prevent spread of infection.

Posted on behalf of:
Heritage Dental
23945 Franz Rd Suite A
Katy, TX 77493
(832) 709-2429

Most Popular

Tori, Exostosis, and Extra Bone Formation in the Mouth

A fairly common occurrence in the mouth is the existence of extra bone development along the outside or inside of the jawline near the teeth, or in the roof of…

Lingual Frenectomy versus Lingual Frenuloplasty

Lingual frenectomy and lingual frenuloplasty are both dental procedures used to correct a condition called ankyloglossia. Ankylogloassia, more commonly known as ‘tied tongue’, is an abnormality of the lingual frenulum….

Difference Between Conscious and Unconscious Sedation

Sedation dentistry is a wonderful option for many people who would not or cannot tolerate dentistry in a traditional dental setting.   Many people have a fear of visiting the dentist,…