When do you need a Root Canal
Sometimes the pulp of a tooth can become infected. When this happens, it must be removed with root canal therapy. You know when bacteria attack the nerve at the root of one of your teeth, the tooth becomes infected and painful! This infection can happen when decay is not treated early and it reaches the nerve, or when you break a tooth exposing the nerve. Even old trauma, a tooth you bumped years ago, can die over time, becoming discolored and infected.
A root canal is a dental procedure to alleviate your pain, save the tooth, avoid extraction, and preserve the normal function of the tooth.
Root Canal Symptoms
The most common symptoms that may occur are:
- Throbbing toothache or other facial pain
- Change of tooth color (darker)
- Lingering sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures
- Noticeable facial swelling
- Gum soreness or tenderness
- Bad taste in mouth
- Abscess-leaking of fluid
- Sensitivity to touch or pressure, as when biting
Many people believe that a root canal is a painful treatment, but in reality, it is no different than having a filling. At Total Smiles Dental, we strive to make the experience as comfortable as possible. We know that the infection is a painful situation. We first cool that “hot tooth” with antibiotics and pain medications. Once it is soothed, the root canal is not a traumatic experience.
The infected tooth can be compared to a bottle of champagne that has been shaken. We numb the area around the infected tooth and the Dr.opens the tooth. Just like popping the cork on the champagne, this relieves the pressure in the tooth. We clean out the bacteria and place sterile material inside to prevent further infection and to fill the hollow.
Following a root canal, posterior teeth, back molars that endure a lot of bite pressure, are usually crowned for additional strength. Anterior (front) teeth may be filled with composite resin or bonding material.