Everything You Need to Know About Root Canal Treatment

  • Home
  • /
  • Blog
  • /
  • Everything You Need to Know About Root Canal Treatment
Everything You Need to Know About Root Canal Treatment

A root canal is a dental procedure that helps save a tooth that is badly infected or damaged. It sounds scary, but it’s a common and safe treatment that can help keep your mouth healthy.

Why Do People Need Root Canals?

Our teeth are not just solid pieces of bone. Inside each tooth, there is a soft center called the pulp. The nerves and blood vessels in this fleshy mass help keep the tooth alive. Sometimes, the pulp can get infected due to cavities (holes in the teeth caused by bacteria), cracks, or injuries.

This can cause a lot of pain and might lead to an abscess (a painful, swollen area filled with pus). If this happens, it’s important to speak with your dentist about undergoing root canal therapy in Colwood, since this treatment can save your tooth from being removed.

Signs You Might Need a Root Canal

How do you know if you might need a root canal? Here are some common signs:

  • Tooth Pain: Constant or severe pain in a tooth, especially when you chew or bite.
  • Sensitivity: A tooth that hurts when you eat or drink something hot or cold.
  • Swelling: Swelling in the gums near the painful tooth.
  • Discoloration: A tooth that has turned dark or grey.
  • Pimples on the Gums: Small bumps on the gums near the affected tooth, which might be filled with pus.

What Happens During a Root Canal?

Knowing what to expect prior to undergoing the procedure of root canal treatment can make it less frightening. A step-by-step guide of what takes place is provided below:

  1. Numbing the Area: First, your dentist will give you an injection to numb the area around the unhealthy tooth. You won’t feel any pain while your appointment is happening.
  2. Opening the Tooth: A small opening on top of the tooth is created to access the chamber where the pulp resides.
  3. Removing the Pulp: Using tiny tools, the infected pulp is taken out, and then the chamber is cleaned of bacteria.
  4. Shaping the Canals: After the pulp is removed, the inside of the tooth is carefully shaped to prepare it for filling.
  5. Filling the Tooth: Your dentist will fill the cleaned and shaped space with a special material to keep it strong and free of infection. It is called gutta-percha.
  6. Sealing the Tooth: Finally, the opening in the tooth will be sealed with a temporary or permanent filling. Sometimes, the tooth might need a crown (a cap that looks like a natural tooth) to protect it and restore its shape and strength.

Does a Root Canal Hurt?

One of the biggest fears about root canals is the pain. However, thanks to modern dental techniques and anesthesia, any discomfort that may be experienced during the treatment can be effectively addressed. Most people feel a lot better after the procedure and are able to enjoy their smiles freely without worry.

What Happens After a Root Canal?

After a root canal, your tooth might feel a little sore for a few days, but this is normal and usually goes away on its own. Your dentist might suggest taking over-the-counter pain relievers like ibuprofen to help with any discomfort.

It’s also important to take care of your treated tooth. Here are some tips for aftercare:

  1. Avoid Chewing on the Treated Tooth: Until your dentist places a permanent filling or crown, avoid chewing on the treated tooth to prevent damage.
  2. Brush and Floss Regularly: Good oral hygiene is key. Brush your teeth twice a day and floss daily to keep your mouth clean and prevent future problems.
  3. See Your Dentist for Follow-Ups: Keep your follow-up appointments to make sure your tooth is properly healing and to get a permanent filling or crown if needed.

How to Prevent Needing a Root Canal

While root canals are effective, it’s even better to avoid needing one in the first place. Here are some tips to keep your teeth healthy:

Tip 1) Brush and Floss Daily: Good oral hygiene can prevent cavities and infections.

Tip 2) Visit the Dentist Regularly: Regular check-ups by a dentist near Langford help catch problems early before they become serious.

Tip 3) Eat a Healthy Diet: Avoid too much sugary food and drink, which can cause cavities.

Tip 4) Protect Your Teeth: If you play sports, wear a mouthguard to prevent injuries.

Looking to book an appointment?

Root canals are important treatments that can save your teeth and relieve pain. Speaking with your dentist about the condition of your smile, especially if you experience a persistent toothache, it hurts to chew, or a blackened tooth will help you make the right choice for your oral health.

Visit Urban Smiles Colwood for more information.