Have you ever been told that you needed a root canal, only to think “Do I really need that root canal? It’s probably going to hurt.” If you have, you’re not alone. Root canals have a bad reputation for being uncomfortable and unnecessary. Fortunately for our patients, both of those rumors are false! Here are a few things that you need to know if and when you are facing your first encounter with a root canal.
What Exactly Are Root Canals?
To first understand whether or not you actually need a root canal, it’s important to understand what a root canal is. Unlike a filling or crown that repairs the outer surface of a tooth, root canals are endodontic treatments that restore the inside chamber of a tooth. They are essentially a filling that extends into the nerve chamber, through the entire root. Instead of capping off infected nerve tissue with a filling, endodontic treatment (a root canal) removes that infection and seals off the nerve chamber.
Root Canal Treatments are Essential
Just like fillings and crowns, root canals are a necessity for some dental disease needs. Some of the most common examples of when a root canal is required include abscessed teeth, dying teeth, and deep cavities. If the inside of the tooth is infected, you need a treatment that reaches those areas – not one that covers them up.
They’re the Last Line of Defense
A root canal is typically the last restorative option for preserving a tooth. They are used on teeth that have fractures or cavities that have extended into the nerve, with no other restorative options available. It’s best to save the tooth when the infection is first noted. Otherwise the infection will worsen and cause the tooth to resorb from the inside out.
Waiting Too Long Could Mean Losing Your tooth
If your tooth goes untreated, it will continue to break down. Eventually that tooth will become so damaged or eroded that it is no longer possible to rebuild it.
Instead of repairing your natural tooth, you’re having it extracted due to the pain and infection. You could have kept your tooth, but now you have to consider getting a bridge or an implant to replace it.
Root Canals Don’t Have to Hurt
It’s true – a root canal doesn’t have to hurt. At Marconi Dental Group we use comfort methods and options to ensure that you can relax throughout your entire procedure. We treat you exactly the same way we would one of our own family members. That means thoroughly numbing the area around the tooth and offering options like sedation dentistry for maximum pain relief.
To find out whether or not you need a root canal, we’ll perform a thorough examination and take an x-ray of the tooth. This allows us to screen for abscesses and symptoms caused by nerve damage or infection. Don’t put your root canal off another day.