Are you currently suffering through the mother or all toothaches? Does a jolt of white-hot pain shoot through your mouth when you bite down or eat something particularly hot or cold? Is the pain distracting you from living your daily life? If so, you might have an infection deep within the center of the tooth, called the pulp, where the tooth’s nerve is housed. Without prompt treatment, the infection could spread to the point that your tooth needs to be extracted. Keep reading below to learn how root canal therapy can eliminate your pain and save your natural tooth.
A root canal is a treatment during which the pulp of a tooth is removed. It becomes necessary when the inside of tooth is so badly decayed or damaged that the only other option would be an extraction. Since missing teeth can come with a whole host of complications, our team at NaLa Smiles will do our best to preserve your natural teeth whenever possible.
The only people who can truly determine if a root canal is necessary are your dentists. However, here are some signs to watch out for that might indicate that you need one:
If we recommend a root canal, go ahead and get that scheduled right away. Waiting too long could ultimately cost you your tooth. Despite their scary reputation, root canals are virtually painless thanks to advancements in modern dentistry, so you should have nothing to worry about.
Rest assured that our first step during your procedure will be numbing your mouth. This ensures you won’t feel any pain during your treatment, only a slight pressure. By creating a small access hole in the top of your tooth, we remove the damaged pulp and sanitize the tooth’s inner chamber. The pulp is replaced with a synthetic substance called gutta-percha and then sealed up. Lastly, we take an impression of your tooth to design the custom crown that will be placed over it for protection.
For the next few days, it’s perfectly normal to experience some minor soreness or swelling. However, this is nothing that can’t be easily mitigated by taking an over-the-counter pain medication or applying a cold compress to your face in ten-minute intervals. Any discomfort should dissipate within a few days. In the meantime, you may want to stick to a soft food diet and/or avoid chewing with the affected tooth until it feels back to normal. In order to make sure your treated tooth lasts a lifetime, brush and floss it as normal and attend your twice-a-year checkups and cleanings.
If you have a particular tooth that’s giving you problems, don’t hesitate to contact us as soon as you can. If it turns out that you need a root canal, don’t worry. We’ll make sure the procedure is as smooth, painless, and stress-free as possible.