The Root Canal Myth
If you’ve heard the common expression, “as painful as a root canal,” you can relax! With advances in pain management in dentistry, this expression is simply a myth. If anything, a root canal treatment can require some endurance due to the length of the treatment, but it is typically no more painful than having a common dental filling.
When the pulp of a tooth becomes infected or dies, root canal therapy is necessary to save the tooth. It is generally a comfortable treatment that can save your tooth and keep your mouth healthy.
Why would I need a Root Canal?
A Root Canal (Endodontic) treatment is necessary when the pulp becomes inflamed or infected. The inflammation or infection can have a variety of causes: deep decay, repeated dental procedures on the tooth, or a crack or chip in the tooth. In addition, a blow to a tooth may cause pulp damage even if the tooth has no visible chips or cracks. If pulp inflammation or infection is left untreated, it can cause pain or lead to an abscess.
Symptoms of Possible Infection
- The tooth is sensitive to hot or cold
- The tooth hurts when biting or pressure
- There is a throbbing, severe tooth pain
- The area is swollen
- You have a bad taste in your mouth
Sometimes, there are no obvious or noticeable symptoms to let you know there is a problem! Only regular dental visits and digital x-rays (as well as the expert eye of the dentist) can reveal the underlying trauma.
How does a Root Canal save my tooth?
We first remove the inflamed or infected pulp, carefully cleans and shapes the inside of the tooth, then fills and seals the space. Afterward, we will place a crown or other restoration on the tooth to protect and restore it to full function. After restoration, the tooth continues to function like any other tooth.
Will I feel pain during or after the Root Canal procedure?
Many endodontic procedures are performed to relieve the pain of toothaches caused by pulp inflammation or infection. With modern techniques and anesthetics, most patients report that they are comfortable during the procedure.
For the first few days after treatment, your tooth may feel sensitive, especially if here was pain or infection before the procedure. This discomfort can be relieved with over-the-counter or prescription medications. Follow Dr. Lisa Mallett and Dr. Murray Knechtel’s instructions carefully.
Your tooth may continue to feel slightly different from your other teeth for some time after your endodontic treatments is completed. However, as with any dental treatment if you have severe pain or pressure or pain that lasts more than a few days, call our office!