More than 15 million root canals are performed each year in the United States, according to the American Academy of Endodontists, helping patients maintain their smiles and avoid having badly damaged teeth extracted.
Root canals use special materials to eliminate decay and restore the tooth’s strength and function, and for most patients, these materials don’t pose any problems. But for a few patients with certain types of allergies, some materials can be problematic. In those cases, holistic root canal therapy can help.
The team at Compassionate Endodontists New York/NYC offers both traditional and holistic root canal treatments to ensure every patient at their New York City practice receives the best care for their oral health needs. In this post, learn what a holistic root canal does and how it differs from a traditional root canal procedure.
Root canal therapy is used to treat teeth with deep decay or traumatic damage. Unlike fillings, which are designed to repair the more superficial layers of your teeth, a root canal is designed to remove areas of deep decay and damage in the central part of the tooth, called the pulp.
The pulp extends from the center of your tooth to the top of the tooth root, contained in long channels or canals. In a root canal, the dentist uses special tools and techniques to access the pulp and remove it, along with any other damaged tooth material. Then, the dentist carefully cleans the canals, seals them, and finally fills them.
Teeth treated with root canals are usually covered by a crown, a tooth-colored cover that hugs the contours of the tooth, providing strength and protection. The crown is applied a week or so after the root canal procedure, so your tooth looks great and functions normally (and without pain).
A “regular” root canal and a holistic root canal have the same goals: to remove decayed pulp, fill the empty canals, and restore the tooth’s integrity. The difference is in the materials that they use.
Briefly, holistic root canals are recommended for patients who have sensitivity issues or who are allergic to the materials used in a regular root canal. One good example is gutta percha, the rubbery material used to fill the canals in a regular root canal treatment.
Gutta percha is a type of latex, a rubbery material obtained from plants. For people with latex allergies, we may recommend an alternative material to avoid potential reactions. Likewise, we may opt for a different type of material to seal the canals or to destroy bacteria inside the canal before a filling is applied.
During your initial visit, be sure to discuss any allergies you have, as well as any family history of allergies or asthma, other medical conditions you have, and any medications you’re taking. Our team will be able to recommend the right approach to restore your tooth and prevent sensitivity issues.
Our team is dedicated to offering custom solutions tailored to each patient’s unique needs for optimal oral health at every age. To learn more about holistic root canal therapy and other ways we can help you maintain your healthy smile, call 929-229-0255 or book an appointment online at Compassionate Endodontists New York/NYC today.