When people hear the words, “root canal,” the scenario that often comes to mind is that of a painful dental procedure that costs too much money. But those popularly held misconceptions are just that: misconceptions. In fact, the only pain you should be thinking about when your dentist recommends a root canal is the pain that is, or will be, caused by the infection in your tooth.
Your root canal will involve the use of a local anesthetic that numbs the area around the tooth, and the tooth itself. Dentists can even offer a calming medicine, like nitrous oxide, to ensure the experience is as painless as possible. You don’t need to buy into the stereotype that a root canal has to be an extremely painful experience.
A root canal is an excellent solution for those who want to save their teeth. More good news is that you should not assume the affected tooth will have to be extracted in the future. The vast majority of root canal treatments are terrific successes that are pain-free.
Signs that a Root Canal Might be Necessary
If you’ve grown tired of your tooth feeling far too sensitive, a root canal might be for you.
If you spot a tooth that has darkened in color compared to your other teeth, make sure your dentist checks it out. If the tooth is indeed darker and the dentist determines that nerve damage is present, a root canal should be considered.
The tooth’s sensitivity to hot and cold foods and liquids is another common and possible indicator of nerve damage. In this situation, a root canal might also be the best course of action. Another common indicator of the need for a root canal is enhanced sensitivity to pressure. The dentist should perform an X-ray of the tooth and use other tests to help determine if a root canal is necessary.
Even if you aren’t feeling any pain, you might still need a root canal. The truth is that there are plenty of teeth that require root canal therapy even though problems aren’t obvious to you. There can still be tooth decay and damage without glaring pains. If you spot any damaged teeth or a pimple-like shape on the gums, see your dentist right away.
Have a Thorough Exam
Gum tissue infections can often be healed without a significant procedure. This usually requires nothing more than a cleaning of the space where the infection is located. The patient can perform this cleaning himself, or he can use an antibiotic. Both solutions are cheaper and require less time and effort than a root canal. Make sure your affected area actually needs a root canal, and not just a simple gum procedure.
Don’t Let a Dead Tooth Linger
There are serious dangers to leaving dead teeth in your mouth. Dead teeth are the worst source of chronic bacterial toxicity in the human body. If there is no doubt that your tooth has died, serious consideration should be given to a root canal in the near future.
Don’t let the roots and canals of a dead tooth impact the millions of nerves in your mouth, or infect your entire body! A root canal will remove the nerve from the central canals and prevent an excess of toxins from entering into your bloodstream.
Before you commit to a root canal, discuss all of your options with your dentist. There are times when a root canal is not the best course of action, when perhaps an extraction might be the right approach.
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All OPT-In Dental Advantage Dentists operate independently-owned, patient-focused practices. And aside from having their professional credentials successfully reviewed, they’ve also been reported to be in good standing with their respective State Boards of Dentistry. Finally, they’ve agreed to the OPT-In Code of Ethics, which you can read here.