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Root Canals

Root Canals and Root Scaling

01/12/2010

Question:

I have had a number of root canals over the past year. (Too many, though probably necessary). I also have a moderate amount of bone loss, which I understand is due in part to normal aging.

I`d like to avoid more root canals if at all possible. My daily dental hygiene is pretty good. Beyond that, would I be likely to profit from a root scaling and planing or similar procedure, to minimize nerve exposure? (Even though my gums are not currently troublesome, with pocket depth at last visit mostly in the 3-4 mmn. range.) Or are there other preventive steps I should take?

Thanks very much for your guidance.

Answer:

Whether you require root scaling and planing or just regular cleanings can be determined by your dentist. Scaling and planing are ways to keep your teeth clean and to help deal with problems with your gums and bone. This is not usually related to the need for root canals. Root canals are usually needed because of caries (a cavity), a crack in the tooth, or because it is necessary to repair the tooth.

Keeping your teeth clean and free of disease is the best way to prevent caries (cavities), which is the most common reason for needing root canal treatment.

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Response by:

Melissa McCartney Drum, DDS, MS Melissa McCartney Drum, DDS, MS
Assistant Professor of Endodontics
College of Dentistry
The Ohio State University