Has your dentist or endodontist recommended that you receive a root canal treatment for a damaged or infected tooth? Often the term ‘root canal’ is a known but scary term for dental patients. However, if you find yourself in need of a root canal, rest assured that you are not alone. Millions of patients require a root canal or other endodontic treatment every year.
A Root-Canal (Endodontic) treatment is necessary when the pulp (nerve and blood vessels inside the tooth) 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.
Sometimes, there are no obvious or noticeable symptoms to let you know there is a problem! Regular dental visits and digital x-rays (as well as the expert eye of the dentist) can help detect this silent problem.
We first remove the inflamed or infected pulp, carefully clean and shapes the inside of the tooth, then fills and seals the canal space. Afterward, a crown or other permanent restoration is placed on the tooth to protect and restore it to full function. After restoration, the tooth continues to function like any other tooth.
Many endodontic procedures are performed to relieve the pain of toothaches caused by pulp inflammation or infection. With modern techniques and local 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 there was pain or infection before the procedure. This discomfort can be relieved with over-the-counter or prescription medications. Follow Dr. Eric Law’s instructions carefully. Your tooth may continue to feel slightly different from your other teeth for some time after your endodontic treatment is completed. However, as with any dental treatment if you have severe pain or pressure or pain that lasts more than a few days, please call our office!
If you’ve heard the common expression, €œas 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 inflamed or infected, 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.
The effectiveness of root canal treatment is well-established. However, misinformation continues to circulate on the Internet that may cause patients to question the safety of endodontics. It is in the best interest of patients to understand there is no valid, scientific evidence linking root canals to cancer or other health problems, and also to understand the advancements in modern dentistry that make endodontic treatment predictable, effective and successful.