Tooth decay is a prevalent oral health issue due to poor dental hygiene, infection, or injury.
The shiny white enamel that covers our teeth is exceptionally resilient to protect the soft and vulnerable inner part within our teeth. When this happens, patients typically notice an unusual sensitivity to hot or cold foods and drinks, and mild to severe tooth pain and discomfort. Left untreated, decay can start to destroy the tooth and can even affect surrounding teeth and gum tissue.
Allowing dental pain or discomfort to continue usually stems from dental anxiety, which is a common fear. Many patients put off visiting their dentist, especially when they suspect a problem until they experience a dental emergency.
Dental Extraction vs. Root Canal Therapy
Dealing with a painful tooth infection might make most patients want an immediate tooth extraction; however, that is usually our last resort. At Royal Lakes Family Dental, we always try to save your existing teeth if it is possible. Still, your restorative dentist might recommend a dental extraction to keep your smile healthy.
The Tooth Extraction Process
There's no reason to worry that removing a tooth is a painful or scary procedure. Dr. Reginald Booker will administer a local anesthetic to numb the area before removing the infected tooth. You may feel a slight pressure but you won't experience any discomfort.
There is a high risk of infection in the area of the extracted tooth, which can set a chain reaction of decayed teeth.
A missing tooth can pose difficulties for nearby teeth, which may feel overworked when biting down. Without the support of each other, they may start to shift towards the gap in the smile, which can create overlapping, overcrowding, and misaligned bites.
We offer root canal therapy whenever possible, as there is typically a higher success rate with few complications. Root canals allow Dr. Booker to remove any infected tissue and protect the tooth without extracting it.
Many patients fear a painful root canal, but the truth is they are no more uncomfortable than having a tooth filled.
We administer local anesthesia so that the area is numb, and patients do not feel anything. Using digital x-rays, we will determine how severe the infection is and which teeth are infected.
Once we remove the infected pulp, we will sterilize the area to kill any lurking bacteria.
Keeping Your Smile Safe and Healthy
For many patients, a root canal is the best option for saving an existing tooth. However, there are cases when a dental extraction is the only viable option.