A root canal procedure is required when bacteria spreads to the roots of your tooth, causing irreversible inflammation. The softer core of the teeth has lots of nerve endings, which is why infections can be so painful. If you have sudden dental pain, swelling in your face or jaw, pain when you bite, an increased sensitivity to hot/cold or an abscess on your gums, this could be a sign that you need a root canal treatment.
Root canal treatment has a bad reputation for being painful, but this is more often than not, untrue. You will be numb throughout the procedure, and once completed, the source of your dental pain will be gone. It isn’t a treatment to be feared or avoided. In fact, it could be your last chance to save a severely infected tooth before we would recommend an extraction.
What exactly is involved with this much-dreaded dental procedure? It isn’t as terrifying as you might think. We start by exposing the inner section of your tooth and remove all traces of the infected tissue using small tools. We have to clean each root canal individually, ensuring that no trace of the inflamed tissue remains.
Once this stage is complete, we fill the canals with a special material that helps to seal the tooth from bacteria. To complete the restoration, we will either cover your tooth with a filling or a crown, depending on the location and the extent of the damage. If the tooth is badly damaged, we may recommend a crown to help protect the remaining tooth structure.
If you ignore dental pain, you might find that it goes away after some time. This doesn’t mean that the problem is fixed, it simply means that any infection is not currently giving you symptoms. The pain may go away for a short time, but it will always return, and the pain may be worse than before. If you suspect you need a root canal, don’t avoid treatment, get in touch with our team.
Yes, it is possible for a repeat infection after a root canal. Some teeth are just more vulnerable to infection, and sometimes your oral health habits will play a role in the likelihood that an infection could return. After multiple root canal treatments, we may recommend extraction and either a bridge or dental implant to restore your smile.
We understand the desire to choose the easier option, and an extraction will often feel like a more straightforward procedure. However, we believe that preserving your natural teeth is better than removing and replacing them. While you could leave a gap in your smile, this could lead to the surrounding and opposing teeth to shift, causing further problems down the line. Where possible, we would recommend saving your tooth with a root canal over an extraction.