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Endodontic Terms

Crowns

A crown may be used to cover a tooth that is damaged by decay or fractured. Crowns also may improve the look of your smile by covering teeth that are discolored and/or badly shaped. Crowns can be made from many different materials including: porcelaian, metal, and porcelain-fused-to-metal. Crown are primarily used to protect and strengthen your tooth. Your dentist or endodontist can let you know what crown is best for your mouth.

Crown fittings typically require two visits. First the dentist or endodontist will remove the tooth decay and shape the tooth. After that an impression of the tooth will be made and a temporary crown made of plastic or metal will be applied. On the second visit the temporary crown will be removed and the permanent crown will be applied and cemented into place.

Root Canal Treatment

To understand what a root canal does, it helps to know the anatomy of a tooth. Under the enamel of the tooth there is a soft tissue called the pulp which is made up of nerves, blood vessels, and connective tissue. The pulp runs from the center of the tooth to the tip of the roots. The pulp is important to the health of the tooth and problems occur when it becomes infected. Treatment by a dentist or endodontist will be necessary if the pulp becomes inflamed or infected.

Infection and inflammation can be caused by a variety of issues such as, tooth decay, tooth cracks, tooth chips, or even by having multiple dental procedures on a single tooth. Symptoms of pulp damage may include, tooth sensitivity to heat or cold, discoloration, tooth pain, or swelling and tenderness in the gums or mouth near the tooth. Though sometimes a person may have no symptoms, which is why it is important to schedule regular dental check ups. If these symptoms occur seek a professional to get a proper diagnosis.

When a root canal needs to be performed a dentist or endodontist will be necessary to perform the procedure. The root canal procedure involves removing the infected pulp, then shaping, filling and sealing the inside of the tooth. After the procedure is completed a crown will be applied.

Pulp Therapy

The pulp of the tooth is located under the enamel. It is found in the center of the tooth and all the way to the tip of the roots. The pulp is made of nerves, blood vessels, and connective tissue. Pulp Therapy is used when pulp becomes infected or damage is caused to the tooth.

Pulpotomy and pulpectomy are two common forms of pulp therapy in children’s teeth. Pulp therapy is required when the pulp becomes inflamed or infected, typically because of a cavity or injury. The purpose of pulp therapy in pediatric cases is to maintain the health of the tooth so that extraction is not necessary.

During a pulpectomy all of the tooth’s pulp is involved. All of the diseased pulp is removed during this procedure from both the crown and the root. The tooth is then filled with either a resorbable material (in non-permanent teeth) or a non-resorbing material (in permanent teeth).

A pulpotomy involves first removing the diseased pulp from the tooth. Following the removal of the pulp a antibacterial agent is placed in the tooth, this also calms the remaining nerve tissue. Finally the tooth is shaped and a crown is place on it.

Dental Radiographs

Radiographs (X-Rays) are a essential for an endodontist to properly diagnose there patients. Without these images major dental issues can go unseen. Doctors use these x-ray images to view injured teeth, survey erupting teeth, diagnose bone disease, and even make plans for treatment. The diagnosis and treatment of these health conditions could not be done without the use of the radiograph. When problems are detected early dental care is typically more affordable and comfortable. Radiographs and examinations are recommended every six months for children and once a year for adults.

Dental Emergencies

Toothache: Rinse the mouth vigorously with warm salt water. Inspect the affected area to make sure there is no food or debris caught between the teeth. If the pain persist acetaminophen can be taken for the pain (DO NOT take aspirin or place aspirin on the affected area). If the face is swollen apply cold compresses. Contact your dentist or endodontist as soon as possible.

Chipped, Broken, or Loose Tooth: Contact your dentist immediately. Swift action and treatment can save the tooth and prevent serious complication. Bring the broken tooth with you to your doctor if possible. Apply cold compresses to the face if swollen.

Permanent Tooth Knocked Out: First, if possible, find the missing tooth. If the tooth is intact (the crown and root) hold the tooth by the crown, this is the part that is visible normally in the mouth. Touch the tooth as little as possible, DO NOT clean with soap or handle the tooth unnecessarily. If the tooth is in good condition (without break or fractures) attempt to reinsert the tooth into it’s socket. Have the patient hold the tooth place by biting on a piece of gauze or clean cloth. If the tooth cannot be placed back in the socket place transport the tooth in a cold cup of milk. Time is a critical factor when a tooth is knocked out, the patient must see there endodontist or dentist immediately in order for the tooth to be saved!

Bonding

Restoration of chipped, cracked, misaligned or miscolored teeth is done with bonding. The surface of the tooth is rebuilt with a resin material. The dentist preps the tooth with a etching solution to place the bond. The bonding resin is blended in colors that match the natural colors of the patients teeth. After the resin is placed on the tooth the dentist will shape the material to the correct contours. Finally the bonding material is cured with a light and the process is complete.

Fees and Insurance

As an update to our previous insurance and payment practices in the first 12 years of our practice’s existence, we are now accepting a few Dental PPO insurance providers. We are now contracted with Aetna PPO, Assurant PPO, Cigna PPO and Delta Dental Premier PPO.

We accept most types of insurance including Delta Dental Premier. If we are not listed by your insurance provider don’t worry, there is still a good chance we can help and it will be covered!

We also offer CareCredit which will allow you to charge the services and make NO INTEREST payments for up to 24 months.

We accept all major credit cards, cash and check.

Patient Forms

Download any of our patient forms by clicking the links below.

Patient History Form

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Patient Consent Form

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Patient Referral Form

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Root Canal Post-Op Instructions

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Apicoectomy Post-Op Instructions

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