Endodontic Treatment (Root Canals)
Because of advanced decay (usually) bacteria gets into the pulp of the tooth, resulting in various symptoms (pulpitis) including pain. If left untreated, a true abscess will develop.
In these situations a root canal is the recommended treatment, which involves the removal of the pulp of the tooth. This is done over several appointments, with the pulpal tissue being removed and medications placed inside the tooth, followed by the placement of sealing material in the canals.
Most frequently, a crown is necessary to finish treatment, to adequately restore the tooth to its proper function.
Oral surgery is the removal (or"extraction") of teeth. The need for this is usually two-fold -- wisdom teeth removal, or general extractions.
For wisdom teeth, we frequently recommend their removal due to a lack of room in the mouth for them to come into the mouth properly. This will usually happen during the teen years, as they start to erupt.
General extractions are those times that a tooth has become so badly broken down - through decay, fracture, or gum disease -- that the tooth cannot be saved and the mouth is healthier by having it removed. These are only done as a last resort. For children, it may be recommended that selective removal of some of the baby teeth be performed to provide more room for adult teeth to erupt.
The removal of any tooth ranges from a relatively simple procedure to that being complex. A referral to a certified specialist may be needed to adequately perform the procedure.