How Do You Know You Need Root Canal Therapy and How Do they Do It?

If you are experiencing moderate to severe toothache pain, a visit to the dentist may be in order. You may need to have a procedure performed called root canal therapy or endodontics.

You may not know that in the beginning your tooth is being damaged by a cavity or fracture, however, symptoms to be aware of include:

  • Prolonged mild to severe cold and/or heat sensitivity making you want to cover your tooth with your tongue, cheek or finger.
  •  Tooth discoloration making is look dark or very yellow.
  •  A recurring or persistent lump and/or pain on the gums over the bad tooth..
  •  Biting pain when chewing food or just when your teeth are touching.

If your infected tooth is not taken care of, it could become abscessed. This will cause swelling in the face and neck and could lead to bone destruction around the tooth. To avoid this issue and save the tooth, the tooth pulp (the nerve) is removed Surprisingly, the nerve of a tooth is not needed for the tooth to function properly.

On your visit, the dentist will take an X-ray or two to determine the extent of the damage and infection. During that visit or next, the area around the tooth will be completely numbed with anesthetic prior to ‘drilling” into the tooth. After this is finished, the dentist will remove all the infected nerve from your tooth. Your tooth will then be sealed with an exacting plug from the bottom of the root tip to the top. After the treatment, days of weeks later a final filling or cap will be placed to protect it from further damage.

Root canals are usually successful and save you from losing a tooth. Taking proper care of your teeth and seeing a dentist regularly can, however, save you from needing this procedure altogether. Healthy teeth and gums also help you avoid other illnesses and stay healthy.


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