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Root Canal Therapy – Aspen Hill, MD

Toothache Relief That’s Nothing to Fear

You’ve had an almost constant toothache for weeks now. You finally called our dental office only to hear our dentists recommend that you get a root canal. Wait a minute – don’t root canals hurt? Contrary to popular belief, they do not! In fact, root canals are incredibly safe and able to both relieve all levels of dental pain and save your tooth from needing an extraction! With the help of our team’s latest techniques and modern dental technology, you’ll be more than glad that you stopped by for root canal therapy in Aspen Hill, MD. If you’re looking for relief from your toothache, give our dental office a call to learn whether root canal therapy is right for you!

Why Choose the Dental Center of Aspen Hill for Root Canal Therapy?

  • Same-Day Appointments for Dental Emergencies
  • Your Comfort Is Our Top Priority
  • Soothing Nitrous Oxide Sedation Available

Do I Need Root Canal Therapy?

woman with a toothache who needs root canal therapy in Aspen Hill

Located at the center of the tooth, there is a small amount of soft tissue. This bundle of nerves and blood vessels is known as dental pulp. In the event that bacteria are able to reach and infect this area, either because of a cavity or cracks in your enamel, a monstrous toothache can develop.

Root canal therapy is not usually our go-to treatment for toothaches. This procedure is designed to save your tooth when it is so damaged or decayed that other services, like fillings or dental crowns, are not enough to repair it.

While severe, lingering tooth pain is the most common sign that a root canal is necessary, you should also watch out for these symptoms:

  • Sharp sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures
  • Pain in a specific tooth when biting or chewing
  • A bump on the gum tissue around the tooth that resembles a pimple
  • Tender, swollen, or red gums near a hurting tooth

If you notice any of these symptoms, call the Dental Center of Aspen Hill right away. We offer same-day emergency appointments for patients in pain.

The Root Canal Process

anatomy of a tooth in front of a light blue background

Our two main goals with root canal therapy are to get you out of pain and to preserve as much of your natural tooth structure as possible. The first thing our team will do when you arrive for your appointment is ensure that you’re comfortable. If you feel particularly nervous, we can administer soothing nitrous oxide to help you relax.

Once you’re ready, your dentist in Aspen Hill will begin by numbing the affected area of your mouth with a local anesthetic. Then, we’ll create a hole in your enamel that allows us to access the tooth’s pulp. We’ll remove the damaged or infected tissue, leaving as much of the healthy structure intact as we can. After sanitizing the inside of the tooth, we fill it with a biocompatible material, seal the tooth back up, and place a custom dental crown on top to restore its function and appearance.

The Benefits of Getting a Root Canal

woman in the dental chair giving a thumbs-up

Root canal is a safe, reliable procedure that has helped countless patients preserve their natural smiles. Some of the benefits of root canals include:

  • Painless procedure – Despite its intimidating reputation, root canal therapy is a virtually pain-free treatment. Most patients compare it to receiving a standard filling. Plus, the recovery process is much easier and faster than that of a tooth extraction.
  • Infection removal – Root canal therapy clears out the infected parts of your tooth. Not only does this relieve your pain, but it prevents the infection from spreading to other teeth.
  • Tooth preservation – Saving your natural tooth helps you avoid the plethora of health problems that can occur as a result of a missing tooth, not to mention the time and money it takes to replace it.

Understanding the Cost of Root Canals

tooth and calculator root canal therapy in Aspen Hill

The cost of a root canal in Aspen Hill can vary for each patient. It depends on the complexity and severity of the case at hand. Our team will be sure to provide you with an honest price estimate before we start to work on your smile. Rest assured that even though this procedure can be costly, it is a wise investment in your oral health because the priority should always be to preserve your natural tooth when possible. 

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Factors That Can Affect Root Canal Cost

Types of teeth for root canal therapy in Aspen Hill

When you come in for your appointment with your emergency dentist in Aspen Hill, we will examine your mouth before providing a cost estimate for your root canal. Some factors that could influence its pricing are:

  • The type or location of the tooth. Incisors generally range from $300-1,000. Premolars are usually in the range of $400-1,800 as compared to $500-2,000 for molars. Pricing is directly related to how involved the treatment is – molars have multiple roots while incisors only have one. 
  • The complexity of the case. Depending on the difficulty of the procedure, it might be necessary to involve a specialist. They may operate under a different price structure than we do.
  • Additional services are involved. For example, a dental crown may be recommended to help protect and fully restore your tooth. A crown means an additional expense, and the cost will depend on the type of tooth.

Is It Cheaper to Pull My Tooth?

tooth extraction root canal therapy in Aspen Hill

If money is tight, you might be tempted to go for a tooth extraction instead of root canal therapy. It is true that in the near term, removing a tooth is less expensive than preserving it. However, a root canal can certainly be more affordable in the long run. Not only can it spare you from having to pay for tooth replacement but keeping your natural teeth can also prevent future dental issues that would incur further expenses.

The longer you wait to get a root canal, the more likely it is your tooth will have to be removed. Then, concerns about your bite being impacted to cause discomfort and difficulty eating enter the picture.

Does Dental Insurance Cover Root Canal Therapy?

dental insurance illustration root canal therapy in Aspen Hill

Most dental insurance plans do cover root canal therapy. It is usually classified as a major procedure, meaning that 50-80 percent of the cost may be covered up to the amount of your plan’s annual maximum. You will need to examine your policy’s details to know for sure how it applies.

Our practice welcomes insurance. We will be happy to verify your coverage, file your claims paperwork, and help you understand your benefits.

Other Options to Make Root Canal Therapy Affordable

Dental financing root canal therapy in Aspen Hill

Beyond helping with your insurance, we offer other avenues to make your root canal therapy feasible:

  • Financing: We can help you break up the cost of your care into smaller, easier-to-manage monthly payments with CareCredit. This is a great way to help your dental care fit comfortably into your budget, and many of the plans they offer have little-to-no interest!
  • Membership Plan: You simply pay an annual fee, and you’re instantly covered for your routine dental care for the entire year, plus you’ll get 15 percent off other services like root canals. You also get one emergency exam per year at no extra charge.

 

In your time of need, we are ready to help with your root canal therapy. We’ll help you navigate the financial aspect, so don’t hesitate to contact our team with any questions!

Root Canal FAQs

A patient talking to her dentist about a root canal in Aspen Hill

There’s a good chance you’re hesitant to get a root canal in Aspen Hill. After all, you’ve likely heard unpleasant myths and rumors about the treatment. In truth, though, a root canal isn’t the boogeyman some make it out to be. Instead, it’s a largely positive procedure that’s comfortable and painless! Still, we at the Dental Center of Aspen Hill understand your concerns. Therefore, we’ve listed below the answers to some frequently asked root canal questions. Of course, you can also contact our office if there are other details you’d like to know!

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Can I Eat Before a Root Canal?

Eating pre-root canal depends on whether you’ll be sedated for treatment. If you’re going to receive sedatives, you may need to fast beforehand to reduce your nausea risk. Otherwise, you should have a healthy meal a few hours before the procedure. Your mouth will be numb after it, making eating difficult.

 

Sedatives or not, you should avoid alcohol for 24 hours before the root canal. The chemical could interact negatively with the local anesthetic used to numb your mouth.

Are Root Canals Safe?

You might think a root canal would raise your risk of health problems. In reality, this idea is patently false. The American Association of Endodontists has debunked it and similar claims, as they stemmed from faulty research done nearly a century ago.

 

Furthermore, root canals tend to be highly successful. In fact, they have a long-term success rate of about 95 percent! As such, teeth treated with root canal therapy can (and often do) last a lifetime.

 

Admittedly, there is a tiny chance of bacteria remaining in the tooth after a root canal and causing reinfection. While highly unlikely, it could happen. You should thus let your dentist know if anything unexpected occurs after your root canal — intense swelling, pain, fever, etc.

Can I Take Antibiotics Instead of Getting a Root Canal?

True enough, antibiotics can treat bacterial infections in most body parts. Even so, they don’t work on tooth infections.

 

You see, antibiotics must travel through the bloodstream to target infected areas. Unfortunately, the bloodstream cannot reach a tooth’s pulp. For that reason, the medicine can’t eliminate an infection there.

 

Ultimately, root canal therapy is the only option for treating infected tooth pulp (besides tooth extraction).

What Happens If You Wait Too Long for a Root Canal?

If your tooth pain fades, you might think you don’t need a root canal. However, keep in mind that teeth can’t heal themselves. Consequently, fading pain often indicates that an infection has destroyed your tooth’s nerves.

 

Since teeth can’t heal such nerve damage, the infection will only worsen without a root canal. You should thus book one once your dentist says you need it. Otherwise, harmful bacteria could spread to the rest of your body and cause systemic illness. Furthermore, the tooth might become so damaged that it needs to be extracted.