Monday, August 31, 2015

What should my root canal look like?

What is my root canal supposed to loo like when it's done?
Ask your dentist to show you the before and after pictures.
Here is a case that I did last week. 

The tooth on the left needs a root canal. 
The black line running through the middle of the tooth
represents the "canal" that runs through the middle of the "root".
Thus a "root" "canal".
In order for a root canal to have the best chance of succeeding
the ENTIRE canal needs to be cleaned out. 
Meaning 360 degrees and all the way to the end of the root.

Below you will see the finished product.
Now, is this "perfect"? 
I am not saying that. I am sure there is always room for improvement.
But, I do like what I see here.
The filling material is all the way to the end of the root. 
There is even just a little out the end, which is great 
(if it weren't do you think I would put it out there for the world to see)?
The filled canal also looks a tad larger then the original, which 
shows that cleaning and shaping took place.
The final filling also has no large voids in it. 

Now some of this may be total Greek to some of you. 
But the take home point is to make sure that the filling material
looks solid and that it is all the way to the end of the tooth.

It is your right, as a patient, to see the after pictures of any procedure. 
Take control of your own health. 
Make sure you are happy with your results. 

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Just extract my tooth!

"I know its bad Doc. Just pull it out. I can take it."

I hear things like this all the time. 
People come in thinking that its the end of the world.
They think that they are a lost cause.
Truth, usually, is that things aren't even that bad.

Take this case for instance.
Corner broken off of a top lateral incisor. 

Not only did we not pull it but we didn't even crown it.
We simply numbed that patient. 
Removed any decay and then placed a filling.

Chances are, its going to be okay.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Do I need a Root Canal?!

You need to ask yourself 3 questions.

#1 Does my tooth hurt to chew on?
#2 Does my tooth hurt to hot or cold liquids?
#3 Does my tooth hurt spontaneously (Just watching a movie, for example).

The more of these questions you answered yes to, the more 
likely you are to need a root canal. 

Here is a before and after picture of a root canal.
The tooth in the middle of the screen needs a root canal.

This is a picture of the completed root canal.
In very simple terms teeth are like the tires of your car.
They look solid, but they aren't.
They are actually hollow.
A root canal procedure is when a dentist goes into the middle of the tooth,
cleans out the damaged, hurting, nerve tissue, and then fills the inside of 
the tooth with a filling.
The tooth is now solid, like a tricycle tire. 
Now it looks solid, and it IS solid.
The white stuff in the tooth is the filling that we placed.