Category Archives: Tooth Pain

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4 Ways to Reduce Anxiety During a Root Canal Procedure

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Just about anyone who has ever been to a dentist can attest to feeling anxiety while in the dental chair, especially if they’re getting ready for root canal treatment. In fact, this is a major reason why people avoid going to the dentist.

Fear and anxiety raise our blood pressure and pulse rates, and increase our breathing to the point of hyperventilation. Even the calmest person can feel a sense of anxiety during a dental visit.

Are we destined to live in constant fear of the dental office?

4 Ways a Patient Can Reduce Anxiety During a Root Canal Procedure

People who experience fear and anxiety during dental procedures, like a root canal or filling, don’t have to be slaves to these feelings. Here are three natural ways to reduce anxiety associated with root canals or other dental procedures.

  1. Meditation and Visualization. Meditation can be practiced before and during a dental procedure. It can be as simple as spending 5-10 minutes in a quiet space and focusing on your breathing. Steady breathing has been shown to reduce heart rates dramatically.

Reduce anxiety about root canal, Endodontist NYC, Root Canal NYC, New York City root canal retreatmentBut it is important to avoid unreasonable expectations. If you are a fairly shallow breather to begin with, or easily hyperventilate in stressful situations, five minutes of deep, steady breathing before a dental procedure won’t help that much. Try a daily practice of deep, steady breathing for 5-10 minutes twice per day for a week before your dental procedure. By the time the scheduled appointment arrives, you’ll be better able to steady your breathing during the procedure.

Visualization can also be effective. Create a beautiful, happy place in your mind. Or, visualize going into the dental office and having a wonderful, serene experience. Imagine the procedure going smoothly and with little discomfort. And, most importantly, visualize yourself remaining calm the entire time.

Do this regularly before the procedure. You’ll be better able to reduce your anxiety and cope during your root canal.

  1. Music. Music can soothe aggravated nerves. Not only is it able to calm, it can help drown out some of the noises of the dental procedure, which can contribute to emotional discomfort.

Find music that works for you. The “right music” varies from person to person. One may like New Age, another Classical, while another finds comfort in Classic Rock.

  1. Scents. Aromatherapy is a great tool for reducing anxiety. Pure, essential oils generally work the best. Some oils that can reduce anxiety during a root canal include: lavender, rose geranium, chamomile, jasmine, sandalwood and ylang ylang.
  2. Gain knowledge. It may put your mind at ease to learn about the most common myths about root canal procedures. Most fears around pain and health risks have been debunked. Read our article about the most common myths to learn about how advancements in technology have reduced health risks and made modern root canal procedures painless.

The Importance of the Right Root Canal Specialist

One of the best ways to reduce dental anxiety is to find a dental office that is supportive and compassionate. A dentist and dental staff who exhibits these qualities—like those here at Fifth Avenue Endodontics—contributes to a calm and safe atmosphere in the dental office.

Choosing the right dental office, empowering yourself with knowledge, and employing anxiety reducing techniques will help make your dental procedure, even a root canal, a less stressful experience.

TECHNOLOGIES IN THE DENTAL INDUSTRY – Reshaping how dentistry is done

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dental scansThe challenge most people have in seeking dental care is getting beyond their perceptions of it as being unpleasant and invasive.  So, advancements in dental technology focus on diagnostics and treatments that can offer modern technology solutions to traditional dental problems and help to eliminate or reduce discomfort and fear. This is the driving force behind research and development – the desire to provide leading edge dental treatment that combines efficient, effective, and comfort.

To most, it probably seems as though not much has changed in the practice of dental care –however, dental technologies have been experiencing continuous evolutions that have successfully helped to transform the field. All of the following technologies have been created with the intention of enhancing products and methodologies for use by your dentist to help prevent, diagnose and/or treat dental conditions and diseases early and effectively. Here we share some of the technologies now available to dental practitioners.

Laser Fluorescence Detectors are a new piece of gadgetry you may see in your dentist’s office.  This device is designed to assist in the early detection of dental cavities and it is estimated that one out of four dentists in the U.S. are using these new dental problem detection tools. This technology aims to achieve non-invasive dentistry as both a monitoring and diagnostic tool that helps to detect “iceberg” cavities that are out of sight and under the surface, where the traditional use of the dentist’s eyes, hands, and X-rays may miss them.

Air-Abrasion is an alternative to the traditional dental drill.  The system is primarily used to treat small cavities and preserves the existing healthy tooth structure while also eliminating the need to use a local anesthetic. It also enables your dentist to remove decay with precision as it offers a blast of pellets consisting of air and aluminum oxide. The air-abrasion technique can also be used to help repair old tooth restorations by accessing difficult areas such as those between the teeth.

Bone Replacement is increasingly popular for use with older patients as most have acquired some form of deterioration that has resulted in critical and uncomfortable bone loss.  To aid in eliminating the need for complete removal of the remaining tooth or teeth, there are now three types of bone replacement techniques:

  1. Autogenous Man Made Bone Replacement is a freeze-dried material made in a dental laboratory.
  2. Cadaver/Animal Bone Replacement is bone, which has been preserved, processed and sterilized from a deceased individual or animal source.
  3. Grafting Bone Replacement is the technique of taking bone from another area of the patients’ body, such as the iliac crest section of the pelvis.And, dentists can now use “platelet-rich growth factors” to help induce rapid bone growth and healing (platelets removed from the patient’s own blood that stimulate new cell growth and repair). This offers quicker healing time, making bone replacement performed by clinicians today more easy to assimilate into the existing bone structure.


And, dentists can now use “platelet-rich growth factors” to help induce rapid bone growth and healing (platelets removed from the patient’s own blood that stimulate new cell growth and repair). This offers quicker healing time, making bone replacement performed by clinicians today more easy to assimilate into the existing bone structure.

CAD/CAM is “computer assisted design/computer assisted manufacture” technology, which has actually been around for more than a decade and now allows for the fabrication of dental restorations. Your dentist may work with CAD/CAM in the office to complete tooth restorations in one visit that in the past may have required twice the time to complete.  Some examples of treatments that now may be completed in half the time are inlays, on-lays, porcelain veneers, dental crowns and dental bridges.


Caries Detection Solution is a red dye liquid that dentists apply over a tooth to detect and confirm if all tooth decay has been effectively removed from a previously affected area after it has been treated. This fluid is very similar to plaque disclosing tablets that are used after brushing to highlight any areas you missed or which haven’t been thoroughly cleaned.


CAT Scans are 3-D images used by Endodontists to diagnose infections and other problems that are not easily detectable on a regular 2-dimensional X-ray. Scans are very useful for surgical planning for root canal surgery (Apicoectomy) as well as for dental implant placement. Implantologists (dental specialists who only provide surgical and restorative implant services) use CAT Scans in examining and working on the jawbone or surrounding bone structure to produce more accurate results. This technology has become increasingly specialized for dentistry as implants, rather than dentures, are now the standard of care for tooth replacement and preferred to dentures.


Composite resin materials are now used in the development of some veneers and other restorations, to fill cavities and create “bonding” to be placed onto a tooth and thus, rebuild it. These resins offer a tooth-like solution and have grown in popularity over the years. They are always being improved upon to better replicate natural tooth colors and ease application and shaping. The handling of and the time associated with completing composite resins, coupled with the translucent qualities of the newer materials, has helped to produce beautiful natural looking results.

Next time, we’ll cover even more new dental technologies that are in use and on the horizon.

The History of Dentistry

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Let’s just say right from the start that dentistry has come a long way! Substantial scientific advancements have been made in the field, many of which have been somewhat underpublicized and overlooked. Treating problems with the teeth goes back to 7000 BC, a Bronze age civilization in the area of current Pakistan. They actually used woodworking tools, drill type tools, to work on decayed teeth.

For a long time, from 5000 BC through the 1700’s, there was an accepted belief that tiny tooth worms got in your mouth and bored holes in your teeth, causing the “cavities”. Many cultures including the Japanese, Egyptian, and the Chinese believed in these worms but alas, they were just a myth. It was in ancient Greece that they began extracting teeth when there was tooth pain, and this lead to pulling teeth for treatment of other illnesses as well. This went on into the Middle Ages.

So who do you suppose performed these teeth extractions way back then? Not the medical community. No, the barbers of their day were the teeth-pullers! They used a tool called a “Dental Key” to extract teeth, the precursor to modern day forceps.

Somewhere between the mid 1600’s and start of the 1800’s, actual dentistry as we recognize it got its start. A French physician named Pierre Fauchard is credited with founding dentistry, and he practiced in the 17th century. It is he who came up with dental fillings, and he is credited with many procedures still in use today. Amazingly, he recognized that sugar contributed to decay, and was the first to educate others about this. In 1723, he published “The Surgeon Dentist, a Treatise on Teeth” that actually described a system for caring for and treating teeth. And so he became recognized over time as the father of modern dentistry.

Another doctor, Dr. John Harris, later contributed significantly to furthering the industry. He opened the world’s first dental school, which was located in Bainbridge, Ohio. He promoted dentistry as a true health profession and his school opened in 1828. It’s now a museum. In 1840, the first dental college opened in the U.S. This was the Baltimore College of Dental Surgery, in Baltimore Maryland. The government began to observe and oversee what was being taught at the college, and this lead to regulation of the practice of dentistry, which then eventually lead to the formation of the American Dental Association.

The dentists of this time period can’t take credit for the development of toothpaste, however. Ancient civilizations would crush up dried fruit, shells of nuts, dried flowers, and talc. They sometimes used various parts of animals bodies as well, and rubbed these odd mixtures on their teeth. Not exactly minty fresh!

We’ll share the history of toothpastes, mouthwashes and dental instruments in an upcoming article.


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If you have a dental emergency, your dentist should be the first person you call. It is smart to keep your Dentist’s after hours phone number handy at all times, because seeing a dentist in a timely manner can make the difference between losing or saving a tooth. But, until you get the appropriate treatment, the following information will help you.

First, ask yourself if it is a Dental Emergency.

If you are not sure, answer the following questions:

•Are you bleeding from the mouth?

•Are you in severe pain?

•Do you have any loose teeth?

•Have you been hit in the face or mouth?

•Do you have any swelling in the mouth or facial area?

•Do you have any bulges, swelling or knots on your gums?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, call your dentist immediately. It’s important to describe exactly what happened and what you are feeling. If your dentist can’t be reached, seek hospital emergency room care.

Here’s what you can do until you get to your dentist.

•Take acetaminophen. Take ibuprofen or Tylenol but avoid aspirin for a dental emergency because it is an anticoagulant, which can cause excessive bleeding.

•Clean your mouth out by gently rinsing thoroughly with warm water.

•Apply a cold compress to the area to minimize any swelling.

•Try drinking ice water if you are experiencing extreme pain caused by hot or warm foods or beverages. It might relieve the pain.

•Breathe through your nose if you are having a sensitivity to cold or if it causes pain to breathe air into your mouth, avoid cold foods and beverages.

•Never apply a painkiller to the gum because it can burn the gum tissue despite what the product recommendations are.

When a tooth has been knocked out.

When you have lost a tooth and you still have it, pick up the tooth by the top (crown) of the tooth and be careful not to scrub it, rub it or remove any tissue. Do not touch the root(s) of the tooth. Then, rinse the tooth off very gently to ensure that it’s clean. If you can, gently place the tooth back in the socket and bite down. If you can’t safely insert it back into the socket for safe-keeping you can put the tooth in a small container or in a cup of milk (the latter is preferable) and take it to your dentist or the ER immediately. It is possible to sometimes reconnect a knocked-out tooth.

Be prepared for a Dental Emergency.
Because a dental emergency can happen at any time and place, the best thing to do is be on the ready and don’t panic. If you are an active person, involved in recreational activities and/or sports, it is wise to pack and keep with you a small dental first aid kit containing the following:

•Small container with a lid

•Name and phone number of your dentist

•Take ibuprofen or Tylenol (not aspirin because it can act as a blood thinner and cause excessive bleeding during a dental emergency).



The best plan to avoid a Dental Emergency.
The smartest thing you can do is to commit to making your dental health care a priority. Brush, floss, and rinse as directed and visit your dentist for regular check ups. Don’t let a dental problem go until it is severe.

The Anatomy of a Tooth – and how it decays

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Understanding a root canal or any dental procedure is more easily done when you understand the anatomy of our teeth. The outside of your tooth is covered by a very hard, white enamel. Tooth enamel is the hardest substance in the human body, and it takes a beating from biting and chewing, not to mention the extreme temperatures of hot and cold beverages and foods. When you think about it, it’s surprising it doesn’t wear down and decay more frequently!

The enamel is very hard for good reason – it protects the soft, sensitive insides of the tooth. The layer immediately under the enamel is called dentin, and it too is fairly hard. But under that is the pulp – very soft and sensitive. The pulp is what can become infected or inflamed. Infection and inflammation can come from a number of causes – a crack in the enamel, a chip in a tooth, decay from cavities, or a faulty filling or crown.

Obviously, if infected or inflamed pulp is left untreated, it will lead to pain for the individual. This is why at the first sign of mild pain or discomfort in a tooth, you should see your dentist. When decay has spread up into the root of the tooth, you may receive a root canal from an Endodontist. Endodontists such as those here at 5th Avenue work specifically on the inside of teeth. We are “teeth interior specialists”.

The roots of the teeth reach up into your gums. They anchor your teeth and keep them in place, and are an essential part of a healthy mouth. Decay travels, so it can get into the roots.

Endodontists save millions of teeth each year, by performing root canals and avoiding the entire tooth being ruined. Saving a tooth is always preferable to losing a tooth. These days, a root canal treatment is very similar to receiving a filling. Gone are the days of root canals being a highly painful dental procedure. They’ve become routine with modern products and equipment. Endodontic treatment will save the tooth and reduce the need for further, future dental work.

However, nothing beats good old prevention. You don’t want the exposed part of your teeth to become decayed, which is why brushing and flossing regularly is encouraged. You don’t want to eat lots of sugary foods either, as sugar contributes to decay (and it’s not good for us, anyway!). Untreated decayed teeth can lead to an abscess, and you don’t want that, as it will be painful when it develops.

Luckily, roots can be cleaned out, filled and healed by skilled endodontists whose goal is to see everyone have a healthy smile. If you have questions about your teeth or gums, please don’t hesitate to ask.

Ouch – I have a toothache!

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We’ve all felt it—that little stab of pain that makes us wince. Uh – Oh –  We have a toothache. It could be something minor like a piece of food that has gotten wedged in between two teeth, and simply flossing will fix our problem. But if the pain is more severe and seems to be up in the gum, you may have a cavity. If you are sensitive to hot or cold foods or drinks—your tooth hurts when you drink or eat these things—this tells us that the root of your tooth is sensitive and most likely tooth decay is present.

Don’t avoid the dentist if you have tooth pain, because if there is bacteria and decay, the problem will only get worse. The longer you avoid the dentist, the worse the cavity can get and you could end up needing a root canal, which means seeing an Endodontist –  who specializes in root canals and saving decayed teeth.

If you have never had a root canal but you have had cavities, then your dentist fixed your tooth decay by using a filling.  Dentists can remove all the decay and place permanent filler into the tooth to seal it up. But when the decay goes up into the root of the tooth, this is when a root canal is required. Whenever possible, your dentist and Endodontist want to save your natural tooth. This is always the best choice. Man has still not been able to manufacture anything as strong and durable as the natural teeth that we are born with.

Remember, your dentist or Endodontist will completely numb the area around the tooth that they are working on. You may have some mild pain after the procedure but sometimes you don’t experience pain at all. Many advances have been made in treating tooth pain and dental problems. Don’t hesitate to call your dentist and ask questions. Explain the pain that you are having and make an appointment so that you can find out what your options are for treatment.

Getting a filling or a root canal have become minor procedures that are practically pain-free. If you are having to the discomfort and you have brushed and flossed thoroughly and rinsed energetically with Listerine or a similar product—and you still have pain—don’t just live with it. Contact your dental office and get your tooth worked on as soon as possible so that the tooth can be saved.

Remember, tooth pain products (gels) that you apply to the tooth and gum are only designed for temporary use. Do not use them for more than two or three days  –  if you need to do this, you need to be in the dentist’s chair and let a professional take your pain away.




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Did you know that the term “tooth decay” is actually one and the same as our childhood fear that our parents threatened us with getting if we ate candy… cavities? This tooth problem is actually on the rise in our society, today.  In this article you will learn its causes, but also learn some ways that we can prevent this type of infection.

The main cause of tooth decay and cavities is bacteria that is left unattended to grow in the mouth. The way that this bacterium causes so much damage is by creating an acid that eats away at the tooth surface (enamel).  By slowly dissolving the enamel on your teeth, plaque then has the ability to form and grow.  The build up of plaque starts creating holes in teeth because minerals are stripped away from the outer layer of enamel. This is basically the first stage of a cavity, but if the present bacteria- acid mixture reaches the next layer of teeth, the dentin, a larger problem will occur.

The dentin is the second defense before getting down to the tooth pulp, which is where all the nerves and blood vessels are contained (that’s when the decay starts to hurt). When the dentin becomes infected it can lead to inflammation, then the worst-case scenario, a pulp infection. The dentin is a much softer, more malleable layer of the tooth than the enamel, and so it is vital to take proper care of it.

Unfortunately there are some dental conditions that can add stress to the teeth and also cause tooth decay. Some of these are tooth grinding, dry mouth conditions where the mouth does not produce enough saliva, or poorly formed enamel. The good news about these conditions is that if treated by a dentist they will not become harmful. Truly, however, frequent dental visits and care are significant to prevent tooth decay and to achieve overall mouth health.

The most beneficial thing you can do to counteract tooth decay is to keep your mouth clean by perfecting your daily dental habits. For basic care it is necessary to brush teeth at least twice a day, and preferably after meals. It is also very important to floss; both of these steps will not allow build up and obviously fight off bacteria in the mouth.

Our diets are also important for a healthy mouth. Today we eat more and more foods that are high in sugar, flavorings, colorings, and processed chemicals. The issue with this modern day diet is that we are missing essential nutrients that support healthy teeth and bones, and allow further risk of breakdown, as sugar especially is a main cause of cavities. To counteract this problem, increase the intake of super foods like milk and green vegetables that provide nutrients and help the teeth to slowly grow stronger.

Keep in mind that even with good brushing and flossing habits and a healthy diet, regular dental visits are a must! Dental cleanings clear plaque from your mouth, but also clean harder to reach areas that we may miss. We don’t know decay is forming until we feel it!

As you can see, the prevention of tooth decay is something that is totally manageable with a little bit of effort. Simply examining your daily dental health, keeping conscious of your diet, and becoming friendly with your dentist can make a significant change for the better, and keep your smile beautiful for years to come!




Diagnosing Tooth Pain

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“Ouch–my tooth hurts!

Tooth pain is not fun. And sometimes it means that you need to see your dentist. However, some tooth pain can be handled by knowing what to do. Here we share some tooth problems and symptoms and what the most likely cause is.

Do you have pain when you bite down on something?

This could be due to several reasons: you could have a loose filling, or your tooth might be cracked. If there is a crack or even if there is not, there could be decay. You’ll need to visit your dentist to find out what is wrong with that tooth, but you can examine it closely yourself. Make sure you do not have any food particles wedged into it.

When you have something hot or cold in your mouth, do you get a twinge of pain in a tooth?

Having sensitivity to cold or hot foods usually does not mean you have a problem. Especially if the discomfort lasts just a few seconds. You could have a slightly loose filling or a small area exposed that is sensitive that is near the tooth root, maybe in a tooth that you’ve had worked on. Another cause is mild gum recession. You can try switching to a toothpaste made just for sensitive teeth. Brush your teeth several times a day with it, or you can apply the toothpaste to the sensitive area two or three times a day just using your finger. If it doesn’t help you, make an appointment with your dentist.

Having sensitivity to hot or cold foods after a dental treatment is normal, due to there being a bit of inflammation from the dental work. If you still have discomfort after several weeks, you should return to the dentist.

Any time that you have pain or discomfort for a minute or more after eating something hot or cold, you have pulp damage…decay that needs to be taken care of. If decay is extensive, often a root canal is done to save the tooth.

Do you have pretty serious pain, possibly combined with pressure and some swelling?

This means you have a cavity and possibly even an abscessed tooth. When you have pressure and swelling of your gums around the tooth and it hurts when you touch it, this is likely to be an abscess, which makes the bone around the tooth infected and sore. You can use an analgesic from the drugstore until you can get to the dentist. Endodontists specialize in working on this type of tooth problem so your dentist may recommend an endodontist or you could make an appointment with one directly.

Do you have pain in your ear, your face, your neck or maybe a spot on your head?

If no other answer seems obvious, do not rule out a tooth problem. A decayed tooth can cause pain in various places. But of course, there could be more going on. You should see an endodontist to fully examine your teeth and find the “root” (smile) of the problem.

Do you have an ache or pressure around your teeth and your jaws?

Sometimes a sinus condition can cause aching in the teeth and jaws so you can try sinus medicine to see if it alleviates the problem. It is also possible that you are a teeth grinder. Clenching or grinding your teeth at night while you sleep can cause aches and pains in your mouth area the next day. You can try wearing a guard over your teeth at night and see if this alleviates the problem.

In general, if you have tooth pain that persists, don’t ignore it…because if there is decay or gum disease, it will only get worse. The sooner you see your dentist, the better. Pain relief products should only be a temporary solution until your dental office visit.


Keeping Dental Decay at Bay

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We’ve all been there. The dentist is touching each tooth with a silver pick and poking around for signs of cavities! You always brush your teeth every morning. Occasionally you floss. What more can you do to keep dental decay at bay? Well…the food you eat, the toothpaste you use—even the water you drink can play a large role in your dental health. Wondering how to fight the good fight against plaque and bacteria? Read on and fight tooth decay!

Keep a Clean Mouth

Ever notice a coating on your teeth…an unclean feeling after eating a meal? What you’re feeling with your tongue is plaque. Plaque forms when bacteria, acid, food debris and saliva combine. Over time, plaque can dissolve the enamel of your teeth, leaving them open and vulnerable to decay and paving the way for cavities to appear.

Brushing your teeth thoroughly just twice a day with a toothpaste containing fluoride can greatly reduce your chances of getting a cavity.

Sugar-Free is the Way to Be

Good nutrition, especially in children, aids in preventing tooth decay. Studies suggest that those who eat whole grains, vegetables, fruits, and foods low in saturated fat and sodium are less likely to form cavities.

Did you know that some foods, including mozzarella and other cheeses, yogurt, milk, peanuts and sugar-free chewing gum are actually good for your teeth? They can clear your mouth of bad sugars and shield your enamel from plaque.

If you’ve already brushed your teeth at night—don’t reach for that midnight snack! It’s the food left on your teeth overnight that is the most likely to cause cavities.

You’ll want to avoid foods that contain a lot of sugar. Steer clear of syrups, taffy and candy and desserts—which can increase plaque, and your chances for dental decay.  Instead eat teeth-cleaning foods like carrots, celery, apples – fibrous foods. Your digestive system greatly benefits as well.

Don’t Hide From Fluoride

Found throughout the earth’s crust, fluoride is a natural mineral that can prevent cavities in two ways. These include hardening the enamel of baby teeth and helping strengthen new teeth as they emerge. Fluoride also helps harden the enamel of adult teeth that have already grown in.

Did you know that tap water contains fluoride? Tooth decay has decreased considerably since this addition. While you can still drink bottled water—don’t forget to have some tap water as well because bottled water has no fluoride.

Fluoride can also be found in toothpastes and mouth washes. If your dentist finds that your teeth still aren’t receiving enough fluoride, he may suggest a fluoride treatment. During this treatment your dentist will apply concentrated fluoride to your teeth for a few minutes.

Don’t Delay on Tooth Decay

Unfortunately, even when we try out best, cavities can still occur! If you do have a cavity that ends up needing a filling, make sure to take care of it early on. If you delay, you may end up with a badly decayed tooth and you may need a root canal.

A root canal is a treatment used to repair a tooth that is badly decayed. Endodontists specialize in this and can perform them virtually pain free. With today’s resources and technology, this procedure has become much easier for patients to bear and for endodontists to perform. So if a cavity comes, it doesn’t mean the tooth is lost.



Tooth Pain Solution

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We’ve all felt it— that mildly unpleasant to intense pain when we eat something or drink something and a tooth in our mouth reacts. Hot or cold foods or beverages can trigger this reaction and it is not a pain we want to live with. When you experience pain of this nature it means the root of the tooth is sensitive—probably  it is being affected by tooth decay and bacteria.

A trip to the dentist might take care of it but in some cases your dentist will recommend seeing an endodontist—a root canal specialist. These specialists work on the inside of the teeth and the roots—having taken an additional two or three years of training beyond dental school. Root canal procedures and tooth replacement can be challenging and a bit complicated and so the additional training enables them to do the absolute best job when a root canal is needed.

Some patients report excruciating pain because the tooth and roots are badly infected and in this case a root canal must be done to resolve the problem. A root canal involves removing the infected pulp inside the tooth and cleaning it out as well as cleaning out the root canals themselves to get all the decayed matter out. A filler is then used and the teeth are sealed. This has actually become a painless procedure due to advancements in methods and technologies. Endodontists perform such a high volume of root canals that they are able to do them quickly and with minimal pain and discomfort for the patient.

Anastesia has improved as well and so if you have feared root canals in the past, you can relax knowing that they aren’t near as uncomfortable as they were years ago. Patients often report that they are surprised at how minimal the pain and discomfort is when they receive a root canal today. And technology continues to advance to help reduce tooth pain. Remember the goal of a root canal is to save the natural tooth, which is always to the patient’s advantage. Nothing man makes is as good as or as durable as natural teeth. These new advancements utilized by endodontists allow more people to keep their natural teeth as opposed to having a decayed tooth extracted.

You may think that ‘painless root canal’ is an oxymoron. But the reality is that new equipment and techniques will enable painless procedures in most cases and the improvements in the sealers and adhesives used mean better, longer lasting results. In most cases a root canal takes just one visit to the dentist or endodontist and is less expensive than it used to be. The failure rate is extremely low and patients should not avoid this procedure—there’s no reason to live with tooth pain.