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Signs You Need a Root Canal

man wincing in pain at the dentist

Why Do I Need a Root Canal?

A root canal is an endodontic treatment performed to eliminate bacteria from an infected root canal, prevent reinfection of the tooth, and save a natural tooth. They can also be used on cracked teeth from injury or genetics, a deep cavity, or issues from a previous filling.

While many patients may be worried if their dentist prescribes this procedure, there’s nothing to fear. Root canals can save your damaged teeth and relieve pain. Here are a few reasons why this procedure may be necessary:

The Three Layers of Your Teeth: Explained

Your teeth are made of three layers. Underneath the white enamel on the top of your teeth is a hard layer called dentin, and below this is a soft tissue called the pulp. This tissue contains blood vessels, nerves, and connective tissue, which help grow the root of your tooth during its development.

When these deep layers become damaged, a root canal is needed to repair the tooth before tooth decay reaches a worse stage where the only solution is to remove the tooth.

Root Canal Symptoms

The following symptoms may indicate the need for a root canal:

  • You have a cavity.
  • Your tooth is sensitive to hot or cold foods and beverages.
  • You have a cracked tooth.
  • You have tooth decay.
  • You are experiencing severe pain.
  • You notice decay or dark spots on your gums.

Benefits of a Root Canal

Beyond restoring the health of your tooth and preventing further infections, root canals can be beneficial because they aid in:

  • Efficient chewing.
  • Normal biting force and sensation.
  • Protecting other teeth from excessive wear or strain.

What Happens During the Procedure?

If you notice any of the above signs indicating you may need an endodontic treatment, you should visit your dentist as soon as possible. If left untreated, the infection can spread — potentially causing otherhealth issues that extend beyond your mouth.

During your root canal, your dentist will remove the infected or inflamed pulp from your tooth. Your root canal will then be cleaned and then sealed. After the root canal is complete, your dentist will either place a crown on the tooth or use another restorative option.

Preventing the Need for a Root Canal

Just like other dental conditions, a root canal can be avoidable with proper dental care. Here are some tips to help improve your dental care routine and prevent the need for endodontic treatment:

  • Maintain a healthy diet.
  • Brush, floss, and use mouthwash regularly.
  • Keep up with your routine bi-annual dental check-ups.

Endodontic Treatment in the Tri-State Area

At ProHEALTH Dental, our dentists specialize in endodontic treatments to save your teeth and preserve healthy tissue while removing infection and decay.

If you are experiencing tooth pain or have had a traumatic tooth injury, contact us to schedule an appointment today.

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