Root canal procedures are commonly performed by dentists to save and preserve a severely decayed or infected tooth. Despite their reputation, root canals are not as intimidating as they might seem. In fact, they are a routine and effective way to alleviate dental pain and save your natural tooth. Let’s walk you through what to expect during and after a root canal treatment, debunking any misconceptions and providing a clear understanding of the process.
Understanding the Need for a Root Canal:
When the pulp, the innermost layer of your tooth, becomes infected or inflamed due to deep decay, cracks, or repeated dental procedures, a root canal is necessary. The procedure involves removing the infected pulp, cleaning the root canal system, and sealing it to prevent further infection.
During the Root Canal Procedure:
- Anesthesia: Your dentist will administer local anesthesia to numb the area, ensuring your comfort during the treatment.
- Accessing and Removal of Infected Pulp: A small opening is created in the tooth’s crown to access the infected pulp and root canal system. Using specialized instruments, the infected or inflamed pulp is carefully removed from the tooth’s chamber and canals.
- Cleaning, Shaping, and Filling: The root canal system is thoroughly cleaned and shaped to prepare it for filling. The cleaned root canal is then filled with a biocompatible material to seal it and prevent future infection.
After the Root Canal Treatment:
- Sensitivity: It is normal to experience some sensitivity in the treated tooth for a few days following the procedure. Over-the-counter pain medications can help alleviate any discomfort.
- Follow Post-Treatment Instructions: Our dentist will provide you with specific post-treatment instructions to ensure a smooth recovery. Follow these instructions diligently for optimal healing.
- Schedule a Follow-Up Appointment: After the root canal, it’s essential to schedule and attend your follow-up appointment. They will assess the healing process and discuss the best option for a permanent restoration, such as a dental crown.
- Restoring the Tooth: In most cases, a dental crown is placed on the treated tooth to strengthen and protect it from further damage. Dental crowns restore the tooth’s functionality and appearance.
Root canal procedures are highly successful treatments that save natural teeth from extraction and alleviate dental pain. If you are experiencing tooth pain or suspect you may need a root canal, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. Prompt treatment can prevent further complications and preserve your natural smile for years to come.