At Chisholm Trail Smile Center in Duncan, OK, Dr. Matthew L. Bridges offers both root canal treatment and extractions for patients experiencing dental pain. 

Alleviate Dental Pain with Root Canal Treatment and Extractions

When a tooth becomes infected, it can cause a domino effect of dental issues. It is important to treat an abscess as soon as possible to keep the infection from spreading to adjacent teeth and the surrounding bone. An abscessed tooth can often be treated successfully with root canal therapy. While it is always preferable to save a natural tooth when possible, sometimes an extraction is necessary to avoid further compromising your oral health. At Chisholm Trail Smile Center in Duncan, OK, Dr. Matthew L. Bridges offers both root canal therapy and tooth extractions to serve your dental needs. We adhere to a patient-centric philosophy, and are committed to maximizing your comfort while improving the function and aesthetics of your smile.

What is Root Canal Therapy?

Root canal therapy is necessary when the internal structures of a tooth are infected. An abscess occurs when bacteria and infection spread from the pulp chamber to the ends of the roots. Root canal therapy involves removing the infected tissues and nerves from the chamber and roots, eliminating the source of contamination.

The Root Canal Therapy Process

Root canal therapy is a common procedure in dentistry, and is quite effective. If Dr. Bridges determines root canal therapy will be beneficial in your situation, here is what you can expect the day of treatment:

  • Anesthesia: In order to make sure you are comfortable, local anesthesia will be administered to numb the tooth and surrounding tissues.
  • Access: In order to access the pulp chamber, a small opening will be made in the top of the tooth.
  • Cleaning: Using special dental instruments, the infected tissues and nerves will be removed from the pulp chamber and the root canals. After this is complete, Dr. Bridges will disinfect the internal surfaces of your tooth to prevent further infection.
  • Filling: Once the infected tissues are removed, your root canals will be filled with a special flexible dental material called gutta-percha. A small composite resin filling will then be placed to seal the tooth.
  • Crown: After a short healing period, a final crown will be placed to cover and protect your tooth, and return you to normal chewing function.

When is an Extraction Necessary?

Unfortunately, root canal therapy will not repair every damaged tooth. If decay or infection is too extensive, or if restorative treatment is too unpredictable, an extraction may be necessary. Teeth affected by severe periodontal disease may need to be removed, as well. Dr. Bridges can perform a full assessment to determine a treatment option that will best meet your needs.

Types of Extractions

The method of extraction necessary will depend on the severity of your situation. The two types of extractions include:

  • Simple Extraction: If the entire tooth structure is intact and visible above the gum line, a simple extraction can be performed. This is typically a fairly quick and minimally-invasive procedure. Stitches may be used, but are typically not necessary.
  • Surgical Extraction: If the tooth is decayed or broken at the gum line, a surgical extraction may be necessary. During this procedure, a small incision will be made to access the tooth. Once the tooth is loosened, it will be gently lifted from the socket. Stitches will be placed to protect the surgical area and promote healing.

The Extraction Treatment Process

Advances in dentistry allow us to perform tooth extractions in a gentle manner. At Chisholm Trail Smile Center, we will do all we can to make sure you have a comfortable and pleasant experience. If you must have a tooth extraction, here is what to expect:

  • Anesthesia: Local anesthesia will be administered to ensure your comfort throughout the procedure.
  • Loosening the Tooth: To gently free the surrounding gum tissue from the tooth, a special instrument called an elevator will be used.
  • Removing the Tooth: Once the tooth is mobile, it will be gently removed from the socket with dental forceps.
  • Stitches: Bridges will let you know if sutures were placed after your procedure. Most of the time, they will dissolve on their own a few days after your appointment.