Everything You Need to Know About Root Canal Treatment
When we hear the words “root canal”, pain and cost come to mind. But how many people know what a root canal treatment really is?
The pain and discomfort that many individuals associate with the treatment are mostly due to the state of the tooth rather than the procedure itself. In fact, the treatment would be relieving the pain post-procedure instead of adding to it.
To put it simply, root canals are smile-saving treatments, designed to restore your strong and healthy teeth. When a tooth becomes infected and starts to decay, there are limited less-invasive tooth restoration options available before a full extraction becomes necessary.
Though the treatment may sound intimidating, a root canal can save your tooth from complete decay and extraction, allowing you to keep your beautiful smile.
What Is a Root Canal and How Is It Done?
A root canal treatment is used to repair and save a tooth that’s severely infected and damaged.
Teeth consist of crowns and roots, found above and below the gums respectively. Inside the crown and root is the pulp, which nourishes the tooth and provides moisture to the surrounding material.
Due to large fillings, cracks in the tooth, or severe tooth decay, the nerves in the pulp can become irritated and inflamed. Root canal treatments involve cleaning up the infected pulp and removing the damaged tissue to prevent bacteria from multiplying and causing a pus-filled pocket called an abscess.
Once completely cleaned out, the area is sealed to avoid further infection and preserve the remaining healthy tissue. Since the nerves in the teeth don’t directly impact the health and function of a tooth, your quality of life will not be reduced or negatively affected.
Signs You May Need a Root Canal
The only way to be sure you need a root canal is by paying your dentist a visit.
If your dental x-rays show signs of a bacterial infection that has reached the pulp or nerves, a root canal treatment is needed. However, you can get an idea of whether you need such treatment by reflecting on the symptoms of an infected tooth.
Some of the most common signs of an infected tooth include:
- Sensitivity to heat and cold
- Tooth discoloration
- Swollen gums
- Chipped, broken, or cracked tooth
- Pimples or boils on the gums
- Pain or pressure when chewing
In some cases, you may not know you have an infection, which is why identifying these warning signs is best left to the professionals. Your dentist will be able to diagnose the problem accurately and determine the most suitable treatment course.
Root Canal Treatment at Richmond
A root canal procedure seems scary, but thanks to today’s technology, it’s not much different than having a deep filling.
Attempting to save a tooth is always preferred, which is why our expert dentists weigh all the treatment options before committing to such a serious procedure. With the help of advanced dental technology and our team’s extensive experience, we work hard to make this procedure as pain-free as possible.
Think you might need a root canal? Book a consultation with our team of exceptional dentists to find out if endodontic treatment is necessary for you.