Avoiding Root Canal
By Jacques Doueck DDS
If the nerve of a tooth is exposed by a fracture or by deep decay the treatment of choice is a root canal – followed by a post and a crown (cap). This is a costly procedure – but the results are predictable. If we had a way to treat the affected nerve without the need for root canal – we could avoid a great expense for many patients.
Are there any alternatives to Root Canal?
Today we have an easy and comfortable procedure called Vital Pulp Therapy. After treating the exposed nerve we use state-of-the-art bonding material to restore your tooth. This is a safe, effective alternative to root canal therapy.
Incorporating the advances of the last century we are able to replace the need for root canal in selected cases. Using state-of-the-art technology and procedures a safe, precise and effective result can be achieved.
How is the procedure done?
The key to success is creating a contamination-free environment inside the affected tooth. When a tooth has had deep decay or has been fractured, the nerve inside the tooth will usually bleed excessively.
Applying sound principles developed in over 60 years of neuro-surgery we are able to Control Bleeding without strong chemicals using a dental laser.
How long has this procedure been done?
Dentists have use pulp treatment for almost 100 years with unpredictable success. With the new technology and the right medications that promote nerve healing we finally have a predictable procedure. I have been using vital pulp therapy for over 8 years with excellent success. Lasers have been used in neurosurgery for years with extensive medical research to back it up.
Can this be done with any dental laser?
There are Different Lasers for different needs. In our office, use 4 types of dental lasers. One for finding cavities (Diagnodent), one for treating cavities (Erbium Laser) one for Laser gum Treatment (Diode Laser) and one to control bleeding and contamination (Nd:Yag Laser) . You need the right tool for the each application.
Ozone – Healing the Damaged Nerve
After the bleeding is controlled, the exposed nerve area is sterilized using Ozone gas made from pure medical-grade Oxygen. Liquid disinfection lacks the penetrating qualities of Ozone. Ozone mimics a naturally occurring process in the human body. White blood cells fight bacteria by entering the bacteria creating an oxidative burst that punctures the bacterial cell wall and cripples the harmful organisms – Ozone does the same. As more ozone attacks the bacteria, thousands of holes are created in the cell wall. Within second the bacterial cell wall can no longer hold its shape. The cell wall collapses and the damaging cell dies. By saturating the tooth nerve the ozone penetrates into the micropores and safely kills virtually all harmful bacteria. Ozone is considered by medical professionals as one of the safest therapies. Ozone disinfects 3000 times better than bleach chlorine or other disinfecting chemicals with virtually no side-effects. Ozone Ozone is so safe it has been approved by the FDA for the sanitization of meats, poultry, fruits and vegetables.
Traditional root canal can always be done in the future if necessary In those situations in which the infection has already spread into the deeper nerve tissue of the tooth conventional root canal can be done if this procedure was not effective.
One-Visit Treatment can treat the damaged nerve and build up the tooth using a bonded filling. The inside of the tooth can be sealed and bonding material can be used to build up the lost or decayed tooth structure to get you comfortable and chewing again.
Can this be done if the tooth is already Abscessed. No. An Abcessed tooth needs a root canal. The key to success with Vital Pulp Therapy is that the tooth needs to be healthy enough to heal. Which means the nerve cannot have an abscess or any evidence of deeper infection.
How Predictable is Vital Pulp Therapy? We have over 80% success with teeth that in the past we would recommended a root canal. Our Patients are very appreciative and it’s very satisfying knowing that we can help people save their teeth, easily, comfortably while saving money.