Monday, October 31, 2016

Consider a Root Canal

Centers for Oral Care
Veterinary Dentistry
2nd Opinion

Animal Dentistry Solutions
No. 2 August 2016
A BLOG by DH DeForge, VMD
Volume I Number 2 August 2016
Fellow of the Academy of Veterinary Dentistry

Consider a Root Canal before tooth extraction!

The Root Canal-A Non-Invasive-Non-Painful Treatment!

Forget the unnecessary extraction of the past!

A radiograph is an essential first step, to evaluate the bone and confirm that the root is intact. There are two options for dealing with a fractured tooth that has exposed the pulp chamber. Ignoring the problem is not a good choice.

Option #1 is root canal and Option #2 is extraction.  Never extract a tooth without FIRST offering root canal treatment.  Never extract a tooth if the root canal is refused without pre-and post dental x-rays.

A root canal is a treatment to repair and save a badly damaged or infected tooth. The procedure involves removing the damaged area of the tooth (the pulp), cleaning and disinfecting it and then filling and sealing it. The common causes affecting the pulp are a cracked tooth, a deep cavity, repeated dental treatment to the tooth or trauma. The term "root canal" comes from cleaning of the canals inside the tooth's root.

What to Expect During a ROOT CANAL
If you think you need a root canal, consult with Dr. DeForge who is an animal dentist. There are a number of steps that occur!
1.   X-ray – if Dr. DeForge suspects you may need a root canal, he will first take a dental X-ray under general inhalation anesthesia  or examine existing X-rays to show where the pathology is located.
2.   Anesthesia – after pre-anesthesia testing, safe Gas Inhalation anesthesia is administered to treat the affected tooth. Contrary to popular belief, a root canal is no more painful than a filling.  The patient experiences minimal to zero pain after anesthesia.  Patients are sent home with analgesics only to guard against the minor local discomfort reported in people.  The pain noted in people, after root canals, is usually from neglected visits to the dentist and resultant tooth root abscesses prior to root canal treatment.  Root canals in cats and dogs are most frequently performed after trauma to the mouth.  Dr. DeForge always monitors his patients to be sure there is no discomfort even in the most minor oral procedures.
3.   Pulpectomy – an opening is made and the diseased tooth pulp is removed.
4.   Filling – the roots that have been opened (to get rid of the diseased pulp) and then are filled with gutta-percha material and a sealant  cement.  A restoration is placed.
5.   Follow-up x-rays are recommended in one year
6.   If the patient dislodges the restoration-filling… Dr. DeForge would then recommend a full jacket titanium alloy crown.

Why a root canal?
Recovery is short
Dentition retained for prehension and mastication of food!

Don DeForge, VMD
Fellow of the Academy of Veterinary Dentistry

After graduating from the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine, Dr. DeForge developed a special interest in oral care.  In 1996, he was honored as North East Practitioner of the Year by the American Animal Hospital Association.  That same year he received the Peter Emily Residents Award in Small Animal Dentistry.

Dr. DeForge lectures on small animal dentistry and oral surgery emphasizing practical applications for the general practitioner. His past columns in companion animal dentistry have appeared in DVM Newsmagazine and Veterinary Practice News for over a decade.  
Dr. DeForge is co-editor of An Atlas of Veterinary Dental Radiology along with Ben H Colmery III, DVM, DAVDC.

As a Fellow of the Academy of Veterinary Dentistry, he has been honored by human dentistry. Dr. Jeffrey A. Sherman, DDS, Diplomate of the American Board of Oral Electrosurgery and Executive Director of the World Academy of Radiosurgery writes: “Your years of lecturing and writing on the subject of radiosurgery have not gone unnoticed.  I believe your efforts in creating the E-Journal of Radiowave Radiosurgery will help your colleagues and makes us all proud of your efforts.  Your discovery of Indirect Radiowave Radiosurgery Coagulation has brought new insight into the use of radiosurgery in all fields of medicine and should be one of your proudest accomplishments.  It is with honor that I call you colleague and friend.  Please continue all of your fine efforts in the field of radiosurgery and know that sharing your knowledge is the greatest gift you have given to the profession.”

Thank you,
DH DeForge, VMD
Contact Dr. DeForge at 1-800-838-3368

or E-Mail to


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