4 Indicators You Need a Root Canal Treatment ASAP
Root canal treatment may be recommended for you if you're struggling with a severely damaged or infected tooth from extraction. It has a high success rate and can prevent further damage and complications.
However, not all dental problems require a root canal treatment. So, how do you know when you need one ASAP? In this article, we'll discuss the five signs indicating the need for a root canal treatment and why it's important to seek treatment immediately, but first;
What is a Root Canal Treatment?
Root canal treatment, also known as endodontic therapy, is a dental procedure designed to remove the infected or damaged pulp inside a tooth. The pulp is the innermost part of the tooth that contains blood vessels, nerves, and connective tissues.
It helps the tooth grow during development and helps to nourish the tooth throughout its life. When the pulp is damaged or infected due to decay, injury, or other causes, it can cause severe pain, sensitivity, and swelling.
This can also lead to the formation of an abscess or pus-filled pocket, which can further exacerbate the pain and swelling. Root canal treatment can relieve these symptoms and save the tooth from extraction.
The root canal treatment procedure involves several steps. The first step is to administer local anesthesia to numb the area around the affected tooth. Next, the dentist will create a small opening in the top of the tooth to access the pulp chamber.
The pulp is then removed using small, specialized instruments. Once the pulp has been removed, the pulp chamber and root canals are thoroughly cleaned and disinfected to remove any remaining bacteria and debris.
After cleaning, the dentist will fill the root canals with a rubber-like material called gutta-percha. This material seals the canals to prevent bacteria from re-entering and causing further infection. A temporary filling is then placed on top of the tooth to protect it while a permanent restoration, such as a crown, is being made.
After your root canal treatment, it is essential to maintain good oral hygiene and visit the dentist regularly for check-ups and cleanings. This will help ensure that the treated tooth remains healthy and functional for years.
4 Tale-tell Signs You Need a Root Canal Treatment Now
If your dentist has recommended that you undergo a root canal treatment, it is important not to ignore their advice. Ignoring the need for a root canal treatment can lead to a variety of serious dental problems, including:
- Persistent Pain and Discomfort: If you ignore the need for a root canal treatment, the infected or damaged pulp in your tooth can continue to cause pain and discomfort. This can make it difficult to eat, sleep, and go about your daily activities.
- Infection and Abscess: As already explained, an untreated tooth infection can lead to the formation of an abscess, which is a pus-filled pocket that can cause severe pain and swelling. If left untreated, the infection can spread to other parts of your body and cause serious health problems.
- Tooth Loss: If the infection or damage to the tooth is severe, ignoring the need for a root canal treatment can lead to tooth loss. Losing a tooth can cause problems with your bite, speech and even impact your overall dental health.
- Increased Costs: Delaying or ignoring a root canal treatment can lead to more complex and expensive dental procedures in the future. For example, if an infection spreads to other teeth, you may need multiple root canal treatments or even extraction of the affected teeth.
Now that you understand the potential risks of ignoring root canal treatment, you could be wondering; how can I know if I need root canal treatment? Here are five tell-tale signs you may need to keep an eye on for the start.
1. Severe Toothache
A severe toothache is the most common and obvious sign that you may need a root canal treatment. The pain may be constant or come and go
It also may be accompanied by swelling or sensitivity to temperature. The pain can also spread to the jaw, ear, or neck, and it can be difficult to pinpoint the exact location of the pain.
2. Sensitivity to Hot and Cold
If you experience sudden and intense sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures, it may be a sign of a root canal infection. The sensitivity can last for a few seconds or minutes.
It can be triggered by hot or cold foods, drinks, or air. The sensitivity may also be accompanied by pain or discomfort.
3. Swelling and Tenderness in/around your Gums
Swelling and tenderness in the gums around the affected tooth can indicate an infection that requires root canal treatment. The swelling may be visible.
It may also feel like a lump or bump on the gums. The tenderness may also come with redness, bleeding, or discharge.
4. Discoloration of the Affected Tooth
If the affected tooth is discolored or darkened, it may signify a root canal infection. The discoloration is caused by the breakdown of the pulp and the leakage of its contents into the tooth. The affected tooth may also feel loose or unstable.
Which Doctor is best for a Root Canal?
When it comes to root canal treatment, it is important to find the right specialist doctor to ensure you receive the highest quality care. The right doctor for root canal treatment is an endodontist, a specialist in treating problems associated with dental pulp.
An endodontist has completed additional years of specialized training beyond dental school and is highly skilled in performing root canal procedures. They have advanced knowledge of the anatomy of the teeth and surrounding structures, as well as the latest techniques and technologies for performing root canals.
To find the right endodontist for your root canal treatment, you can start by asking your regular dentist for a referral. Your dentist can recommend an endodontist that they trust and have worked with in the past. You can also do your own research by reading online reviews and checking the credentials and experience of potential endodontists.
When you visit the endodontist for your root canal treatment, be sure to ask questions about their experience and approach to treatment. It is important to choose an endodontist who takes the time to listen to your concerns and explain the procedure and any potential risks or complications.
Recognizing the signs that you need a root canal treatment and seeking prompt care from the right specialist can save you from significant discomfort and help preserve your natural teeth. With the help of an experienced endodontist, you can receive high-quality care that can improve your dental health and overall well-being.
At Dennis Tan Dental, our team of highly skilled endodontists is dedicated to providing top-notch root canal treatments that prioritize your comfort and satisfaction. If you are experiencing any of the symptoms of a damaged or infected tooth, don't hesitate to contact us to schedule an appointment. Let us help you achieve a healthier, more confident smile!
Dennis Tan Dental Surgery
11 Collyer Quay #03-28, Singapore 049317
+65 6438 5622