What is a root canal treatment?
A root canal treatment is a surgical procedure that is aimed at taking the infected pulp out of a tooth and treating the infected root canal of the tooth. Dentists who perform a root canal treatment are called endodontists.
The purpose of a root canal treatment is to make sure that the tooth does not get infected in the future and also to save the natural tooth.
Why do you need root canal treatment?
As you’ve already understood, you need a root canal treatment when the pulp of your tooth is infected. This is a condition called ‘pulpitis’. The pulp is the innermost part of your tooth. When an infection has been left untreated or gone unnoticed for too long, the bacteria start to penetrate the tooth and eventually reach the pulp.
No amount of brushing and flossing is enough to get rid of this infection and a root canal treatment is often the most viable option.
What are the symptoms of needing root canal treatment?
The symptoms that you need a root canal treatment could be as minor as a mild toothache and as severe as a swollen lymph node. Let’s take a look at them all:
- A severe or mild toothache
- Discolored tooth
- Increased tooth sensitivity to hot and cold
- Sensitivity to sweet food
- Swollen and red gums.
There are many more symptoms that you need root canal treatment. However, the ones mentioned above are the most common. Sometimes, patients may not show any signs at all until it’s too late. This is why you must go for dental check-ups at least twice a year.
Does a root canal treatment hurt?
A root canal treatment does not really hurt and there’s a reason for that. In a root canal treatment, you get the pulp of your tooth taken out, which harbors the nerve tissues. These nerve tissues are responsible for sending distress signals to the brain.
When these nerve tissues are taken out, your tooth will be rather painless! Furthermore, the nerve tissues in your tooth would likely have been damaged to an extent that they wouldn’t be able to send any signals to the brain.
The root canal treatment procedure
The root canal treatment procedure is a simple, yet complex one.
- At first, the endodontist will drill an access hole in your tooth, all the way down to the root.
- Following that, the endodontist will take the infected pulp and surrounding nerve tissues out of the tooth.
- A dental filling would be placed in your tooth to fill the area taken out in the root canal treatment.
In some cases, an endodontist may even prefer to temporarily seal the tooth and apply the filling on the next appointment.
Is there an alternative to root canal treatment?
You’d think that a tooth extraction is a good alternative to a root canal treatment. However, as mentioned earlier, a root canal treatment aims to save your natural tooth. With tooth extraction, you lose your tooth.
However, in some instances, it could be a better option than root canal treatment. This is because after a root canal treatment, your tooth becomes dead and it needs a lot of nourishment to keep it healthy despite the absence of the pulp inside the tooth. This tooth can get discolored or even fragile and break in the future.
Thus, it’s often a better choice to get your tooth extracted and replace it with dental implants. It’s important to get a good dental consultation for this matter. In Carthage NY, you can get the best endodontist near you open today to get your dental consultation for a root canal treatment.