One of the scariest moments in your life comes when your dentist tells you that you need to have a root canal. But what is a root canal other than a painful experience? A root canal is the treatment of the pulp of your tooth that has become inflamed, infected, or dead. Your tooth’s pulp is the soft substance in the center of your tooth that consists of the nerve, blood vessels, and connective tissue. The pulp chamber is the hollow part in the center of your tooth that encloses the pulp and flows down the canals that extend through your tooth’s roots and into the bone. Some roots have more than 1 canal, but all roots have at least 1 canal. To treat a root canal, the tooth’s pulp is removed, and all canals and the pulp chamber are filled and sealed to prevent any bacteria entering.
There are many reasons to get a root canal. One of the simplest and most common symptoms is pain. If you think you’ll just deal with the pain, think again. Long term untreated pain can lead to increased headaches that make it hard to trace back to a sore tooth. You could even have swelling in your cheek, jaw, or throat. The pain is caused by exposed root surfaces.
You could be scheduling a root canal if you have an abscess. An abscess is created when your tooth’s pulp dies and a pus pocket forms around the end of its root. The pus accumulates in the dead nerve tissue area that is infected with bacteria. If left untreated, this infection will grow and spread into the surrounding bone and tissue. The only way to fix an abscess is through a root canal, but antibiotics can help prevent the infection from spreading. A deep cavity can create the need for a root canal if the cavity extends all the way to the pulp. If your mouth suffers a severe trauma and a tooth’s nerve is severed, you’ll be looking into the eyes of a root canal. The same is true of a tooth fracture. There other potential grounds to decide to undergo a root canal, but these are the primary ones.
The truth is you shouldn’t be worried about having a root canal. Over 95% are successful and last a lifetime. The trick is to get a permanent restoration, like a filling or crown, on your tooth right after the root canal and maintain excellent hygiene. This isn’t a cure for never having to brush and floss again. If you are experiencing any sort of tooth pain or see any swelling or any new mouth sores, you need to go see your Spring Emergency Dentist or call them at 281-320-0400. You will get the care that you need to quickly ease your pain.