Do you feel a sense of dread when it’s time for your bi-annual teeth cleaning? Does the thought of getting a cavity filled make you anxious? For many people, going to the dentist can be a stressful experience. However, knowing what to expect during common dental procedures can help put your mind at ease.
In this blog post, we’ll walk through the 5 most routine dental procedures, explaining what’s involved and tips for making the experience as smooth as possible.
Read on to get the inside scoop on cleanings, fillings, crowns, root canals, and wisdom tooth extractions.
Cleanings: Scrape, Polish, Floss, Repeat
The goal of a professional teeth cleaning is to remove the plaque and tartar that builds up on your teeth. Plaque is a sticky film of bacteria, while tartar is hardened plaque that bonds to the tooth’s surface. Your dentist or hygienist will use metal scaling tools to scrape off these deposits above and below the gum line. You may hear scraping sounds or feel some vibration during this process.
Next, they’ll polish your teeth with a gritty toothpaste to smooth and shine the teeth. They’ll also floss between all of your teeth and give your mouth a thorough rinse. The whole process takes 30-60 minutes. Pro tip: Come prepared with sunglasses to protect your eyes from the bright light.
Cavity Fillings: Drilling Away Decay
Cavities form when plaque bacteria erode tooth enamel. If left untreated, the decay spreads deeper into the tooth. To stop it in its tracks, your dentist will numb the area with an anesthesia injection. They’ll then use a drill to remove the decayed section. The drilling sensation can be uncomfortable, but the anesthesia keeps you pain-free. They’ll rinse and dry the area before filling it with a durable material like composite resin or amalgam. You may feel some pressure as the filling is placed and hardened with a curing light. The procedure takes 30-90 minutes depending on the size and location.
Crowns: Fitting You With a Custom Cap
A crown (or cap) is placed over a tooth when the original tooth structure is compromised, often after a large filling or root canal. The dentist numbs the area and files down the remaining tooth to make room for the crown. They take impressions of your mouth to make an exact model. A temporary plastic crown is placed while the permanent custom crown is created. At your follow-up, the permanent crown is cemented onto your tooth with a bonding agent. Crowns require 2+ visits but protect damaged teeth from further stress and decay.
Root Canals: Removing Infection From Inside the Tooth
Root canals treat deep infections. Your dentist will numb the area before drilling an access hole through the top of the tooth. Using special tools, they’ll clear out the infected pulp and nerve tissue in the tooth’s interior root canals. The space is disinfected, filled with a rubber material called gutta percha, and sealed off. You may feel some pressure as the interior is filled. The whole process takes 1-2 hours. They’ll finish with a temporary filling until a permanent restoration is made. With the infection gone, your tooth can be saved.
Wisdom Teeth Removal: Extracting Those Pesky Molars
Wisdom teeth often become impacted or grow in misaligned. This can crowd other teeth and cause recurrent infections of the gum tissue around them. Extraction is frequently necessary. Your dentist will numb the area with a local anesthetic. Tools are used to loosen the tooth before they utilize controlled force to rock it out of the socket. You may feel pressure and rocking. Stitches are placed to close the extraction site, and gauze is used to bite down to stop bleeding. Following the dentist’s post-op care instructions can help minimize temporary discomfort. Extractions take 30-60 minutes.
While no one looks forward to time in the dentist’s chair, knowing what’s happening during the process can help you feel empowered and relaxed. Talk to your dentist if you have any concerns – they want you to feel comfortable. With the right information and an excellent dental team on your side, you’ve got this!
Empower Yourself for Dental Visits in Windsor
Feeling anxious about your next dental appointment? As your trusted Windsor dentist, Roseland Family Dental is here to help. We explain dental procedures like cleanings, fillings, and crowns so you feel informed and comfortable. Our experienced team offers comprehensive services from routine family dentistry to cosmetic treatments. We provide the details you need to breeze through any dental visit with less stress.
With personalized care, skill, and a friendly manner, we make your time in the dental chair pain-free. We’re dedicated to your optimal oral health through preventive, restorative, and emergency services. Empower yourself with knowledge from the experts.