What is a Root Canal Treatment?
A root canal treatment is designed to both repair and salvage a tooth that is infected or decaying. During a procedure, the pulp (which is comprised of blood vessels and nerves) is removed, and the inside of the tooth is thoroughly cleaned and sealed so bacteria cannot grow. If you suspect you need a root canal treatment and are in search of a dental office in Scarborough, The Tooth Corner is always accepting new patients. Below is information about what a root canal treatment entails as what to expect afterwards.
Signs You May Need a Root Canal Treatment
A common sign that you may be in need of a root canal treatment is tooth pain. However, not all forms of tooth pain is an indicator that a root canal is necessary. You should consult with your dentist if you experience:
- Extreme pain in a tooth whenever you’re eating or brushing
- Extreme sensitivity to hot or cold that isn’t alleviated once the hot or cold substance has been removed
- Darkening or discoloration of a tooth
- A small bump on the gums near the source of your tooth pain
- Swelling or tenderness in the gums near the source of your tooth pain
Common Causes of Root Canals
Remedying the cause of a root canal is of the utmost importance. There are three common causes of root canals:
- Damage: Chips or cracks in a tooth that allows bacteria to lead to tooth decay and pain.
- Decay: Inner tooth decay that has spread through the layers of the tooth.
- Disease: Severe tooth decay, an injury, cracks or chips in a tooth, recent dental treatments, and large fillings can put a tooth at risk of infection inside the pulp.
What to Expect During a Root Canal Treatment
One of the most common questions patients have is, “How long does a root canal treatment take?” You might be surprised to learn that in many cases, the actual procedure can be completed in 60 to 90 minutes.
During your initial consultation with your dentist, he or she will take x-rays to determine the extent of the root canal infection. The actual root canal treatment may be completed in a single visit, depending on your situation.
While many individuals fear that a root canal procedure will be painful, most discover that the process is similar to that of receiving a dental filling. Before beginning the treatment, your dentist will use a local anesthetic to numb the area to make you feel more relaxed. The dentist will then use special tools to extract the pulp and damaged nerves then apply a sealant and a temporary filling to close the area.
What to Expect After a Root Canal Treatment
After your root canal treatment, you may experience some discomfort, sensitivity, or pain which should go away after a period of time. Using a soft-bristled toothbrush and toothpaste that’s designed for sensitive teeth can help to alleviate your discomfort. Your dentist will most likely want to see you a few days after your treatment so he or she can remove the temporary filling and place a crown over the tooth to protect it.