What Happens When Your Dentist Suggests Root Canal Therapy?
When your dentist recommends you should undergo root canal treatment what would your first reaction be? You could perhaps consider running away from the dentists’ office believing you are about to get into a weird treatment that will shake the wits out of you. You perhaps do not realize the dentist has only recommended the treatment because you have an infected root canal in your tooth which is causing you immense pain and discomfort. You can either accept the recommendation of the dentist to undergo the treatment or choose to leave the office of the dentist with the information that your tooth may soon have to be extracted.
Root canal treatments have acquired a notorious reputation and for some reason are believed to be extremely painful despite the reality being entirely different. Modern-day anesthesia and techniques of advanced dentistry have made the treatment just as painful as a routine filling and therefore you can rest assured you will not be subject to unnecessary pain and discomfort if you decide in favor of the procedure.
What Is a Root Canal?
A procedure to remove the soft center of the tooth which is the pulp is known as a root canal. The pulp contains the connective tissues, blood vessels, and nerves that are helpful for nourishing the tooth when it is developing. The root canal therapy will be performed by your dentist or an endodontist who is a specialist in these procedures. You will be administered local anesthesia when the treatment is being provided.
When Is a Root Canal Needed?
The root canal would have been thrust upon you because the pulp from within your tooth is either injured or inflamed or even infected. The crown of your tooth will remain in your mouth even if the pulp within is dead. To preserve the structure of the tooth dentist decides to remove the infected or injured pulp. The main reasons contributing to the damage of the pulp may include the following:
- Deep decay due to an untreated cavity.
- Several dental procedures on the same tooth.
- Chips or cracks in the tooth.
- Injuries to the tooth that are not visible but causing injury to the pulp.
If you have damaged pulp within your tooth you can suffer from symptoms such as pain and swelling and a sensation of heat in your gums. Your dentist will examine the painful tooth before taking x-rays for confirming a diagnosis. You may be referred to an endodontist if the dentist believes a root canal is imperative.
How is the procedure performed?
Root canal therapy is performed in a dental office and when you arrive for your appointment you will be escorted to the treatment room by a technician who will place a bib around your neck to offer protection to your clothes.
The dentist will administer local anesthetic into your gums near the affected tooth. You will feel a sharp pinch when the anesthetic is injected into your gums but thereafter you will have no feeling. You will be awake during the procedure but will feel only pressure without any pain.
The endodontist or dentist will make a small access hole on the top of the tooth. After exposing the infected pulp the dentist will remove it carefully using tiny instruments and they will be careful to clean out the pathways in your tooth.
After removing the pulp a special antibiotic will be coated on the area to ensure the infection has been removed and to prevent reinfection. The tooth will then be filled and sealed by the dentist with a rubber-like material called gutta-percha. You may also be prescribed oral antibiotics. The procedure will be ended by the dentist but filling the tiny access hole created at the beginning with some soft temporary material. The sealant treats the canals from being damaged by saliva.
Follow-Up after Root Canal Therapy
You will experience some numbness and soreness in your gums when the anesthesia wears or. Some swelling may also be experienced. The dentist providing root canal treatment in Morrisburg will suggest to pain medications or even prescribe other medications if needed.
You must see your regular dentist within a few days after the root canal. Your dentist will take x-rays to ensure the infection has been removed and will replace the temporary filling with a permanent restoration in the form of a dental crown. These are artificial teeth made from porcelain or gold and are necessary to protect the infected tooth from breaking because it would have been rendered fragile after the root canal.
Root canal treatments are to relieve the pain that you are suffering from because of the infected pulp within your tooth and therefore should be had if recommended by your dentist.