Has your dentist recommended you have a root canal? Our Ottawa dentists explain this dental procedure, why you may need one and what you can expect.
Why might I need a root canal?
Your tooth has pulp on the inside, which can become infected with bacteria as a result of a deep cavity or traumatic injury. Only your dentist can examine the tooth and confirm whether you need this dental surgery, since pulp damage may happen even if there are no visible cracks or chips in the tooth.
Root canal therapy (also known as endodontics) can save a tooth that has become infected on the inside. The tooth would die without a root canal and you would have to have it extracted. Missing teeth can cause complex dental problems that are difficult, time-consuming, and expensive to repair. If at all possible, it is always preferable to save the tooth with a root canal.
A root canal can preserve your tooth and alleviate symptoms such as:
Severe Toothache Pain
When the tooth pulp is infected, it is frequently painful. When you apply pressure to the tooth, such as while chewing, you may experience sharp pain. There may also be sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures.
Bump on the Gums
This small, pimple-like bump forms on the gums near a tooth that may require a root canal, and is also known as a dental cyst. Dental cysts form on the roots of infected or decayed teeth. They can also form if the pulp of the tooth becomes infected.
Darkening of the Tooth
Infected pulp may cause a tooth to darken in colour due to internal damage. If you notice one of your teeth is a darker shade than the others, there may be an issue with the inner pulp.
What happens during a root canal procedure?
With modern dental technology and techniques, root canal therapy has become a relatively simple and minimally invasive procedure when compared with a tooth extraction or other procedures.
Before your dentist uses a specialized tool to create an opening in the tooth, the area will be numbed with anesthesia. The bacteria, diseased blood vessels, and dead tissue will then be removed from the tooth's interior. The inner chamber of the tooth will be shaped and irrigated with water to remove any remaining diseased tissue.
Your dentist may also apply an antimicrobial solution to eliminate any remaining bacteria and decrease your risk of further infection.
After the chamber has been thoroughly cleaned and dried, it will be filled with medicated dental material. Your dentist will then place a temporary filling to seal the tooth until a permanent crown is placed.
A few weeks later, the permanent dental crown will be placed to protect the tooth from damage.
If you are curious about others' experiences during their root canals, you might type "root canal reviews" into your favourite search engine and read up on the topic. Most teeth that have had root canal treatment can last a lifetime, and help you maintain confidence in your smile.
Do you have questions about root canal therapy, and how this procedure can help you? Our Ottawa dentists can explain the process and answer any inquiries you may have. Contact us today.