When a tooth develops an infection or a dental abscess, this could mean serious discomfort and the risk of tooth loss. In order to save the tooth and keep your smile whole, your Ankeny, IA, dentist may suggest a root canal procedure. When should you contact our team for a procedure like this, and what can you do to avoid infections from home?
The Causes of an Infection or Abscesses
How does a tooth end up infected or abscessed? Well, the outer layers of tooth enamel actually protect the tooth from injury, cavities, and infection. In fact, tooth enamel is the hardest substance in the human body. However, beneath the enamel is the dentin, which makes up most of the tooth structure and is sensitive. At the very center, is the pulp, the group of living tissues that keeps the tooth functional and healthy. Cavities happen when bacteria bypasses the enamel and reaches the dentin, usually via injury or poor oral health. An infected or abscessed tooth develops when the bacteria reach the pulp, usually as a result of spreading tooth decay or an injury, such as a fracture.
Treatment with Endodontics
If you begin to experience a persistent ache or sensitivity, or if our tooth hurts when you bite down or chew, then please let our team know right away. Other warning signs of an infected tooth may include swelling near an aching tooth, or possibly a discharge from it. We will examine your smile and if we discover an infected tooth, we will administer a local anesthetic to ensure you remain comfortable. We then open the tooth and remove the infected tissue. The next step involves adding a restorative filling material, and then capping the tooth with a crown, which not only protects it, but looks natural too!
Avoiding Future Infections
Taking care of your smile from home helps limit the risks of future cavities and prevents your tooth from becoming infected or abscessed. We suggest brushing your teeth when you wake for two minutes, and doing so again before bed. Using a fluoride toothpaste when you do, as this helps strengthen the outer enamel. Make time to floss before bed as well, and try to cut back on sugary foods and drinks too! If you have any questions, then contact our team today.
Do You Have Questions About Endodontic Treatment?
We want to make sure issues like infection don’t lead to lost teeth and worsening discomfort. To learn more about our approach to restorative dentistry, then please schedule an appointment by calling Peddicord Family Dentistry in Ankeny, IA, today at (515) 963-3339. We also proudly serve patients of all ages who live in Bondurant, Polk City, Elkhart, Alleman, Cambridge, and all surrounding communities.