About 15 million root canals are performed each year, according to the American Association of Endodontists. If a tooth becomes decayed or infected, sometimes a root canal treatment may be necessary to repair and save the tooth. Read on and find answers to some of the most frequently asked questions.
What should I expect during a root canal procedure?
Root canal treatment is very straightforward, usually requiring only four steps. First, your dentist will need to x-ray the tooth to determine exactly where the decay is located. After that, local anesthesia is applied to the affected tooth. Next, your dentist will perform a pulpectomy by creating an opening through which the infected tooth pulp and nerve are removed. Finally, the opened roots are filled and sealed to prevent further infection and decay.
Will the root canal treatment be painful?
The purpose of the root canal is to alleviate pain caused by decay and infection. Thanks to modern medicine and anesthesia, many patients have a comfortable experience. After the procedure, you may feel some tooth sensitivity, especially if you’ve experienced pain or infection prior to the procedure. However, this discomfort can be lessened with over-the-counter pain medication, but be sure to follow your dentist’s post-treatment instructions carefully. Should you feel any pressure or severe pain that lasts more than a few days, notify your dentist immediately.
What will happen if I chose not to get a recommended root canal?
When opting out of this treatment, the tissue that surrounds the tooth may become infected. If that happens, abscesses can form. Abscesses are pockets of pus caused by an infection that can create intense pain in the jaw, bad breath, possible loss of the tooth, and other symptoms.
How do I care for my teeth after a root canal?
After a root canal procedure, be sure to take great care of your teeth and gums. It may be a wise idea to schedule a follow-up dental appointment to have the treated tooth x-rayed once more to ensure that all signs of infection are long gone. Every day, you should brush twice and floss. With a consistent dental hygiene routine, you can keep a tooth that has been treated with a root canal healthy and strong.
To avoid tooth decay, have your teeth cleaned and regularly examined to prevent infection. Make a proactive choice for your dental health, and schedule your appointment today at either of our dental locations in Southfield or Detroit. We’re here to help you achieve healthy teeth and a beautiful smile!