People are naturally afraid of losing their teeth. If you have a serious dental issue, you might wonder, “Can this tooth be saved?” Often, the answer is “Yes, if you get a root canal.” You may wince at the thought, but root canals, like most other dental procedures, are a convenient, painless way to take care of inflammation, infection, breakage and other tooth issues. In many cases, a root canal can prevent the need for tooth extraction. Root canals are a good thing.
Sometimes, a root canal needs to take place immediately due to accident, illness or injury. You may need an emergency root canal in these pressing instances.
What is a root canal treatment?
When a general dentist or endodontist gives you a root canal, they are fixing damage inside a tooth. They will drill a hole into the affected tooth and then remove the pulp, which is the material inside. Dental pulp is a soft substance that contains nerves, tissue and blood. Once the dentist removes the pulp, they clean and disinfect the tooth before filling it with replacement material and sealing it. The tooth retains its looks and functionality.
You may also need a crown to replace the top of a damaged tooth, even after the root canal.
What causes the need for a root canal treatment?
Often, regular dental checkups and good routine dental care will keep you from needing an emergency root canal. However, even if you are a stickler for excellent dental health, you can still develop problems that require this procedure. These issues include:
- Untreated dental decay
- Dental decay that develops under a filling
- Bruxism, or constant tooth grinding
- Advanced gum disease
- Old tooth cracks
- Trauma such as falls, car accidents, etc.
Root canals can correct many serious tooth problems.
When do I need a root canal treatment?
Your dentist will evaluate the condition of your tooth and decide which treatment is best for you. An emergency root canal may be necessary if you have one of the following issues:
Severe tooth decay
A simple filling can correct most cavities, but severe tooth decay needs more extensive treatment. With deep cavities, the tooth pulp can become inflamed and infected. If it is not removed, the infection can spread throughout your mouth and body. Untreated tooth infections can even infect your heart. An emergency root canal can prevent these serious consequences.
Many factors can cause your teeth to become discoloured, and tooth infection is one of them. If you have a really dark or black tooth, it may be a sign of serious decay. While the filling material used in a root canal can fix the discolouration, you may ultimately need a tooth whitening treatment to give the tooth the appearance you desire.
Cracked or chipped tooth
Your dentist can fix most cracks or chips using bonding material or crowns, but fissures that extend into the pulp may require an emergency root canal to correct. Without treatment, the tooth pulp can become infected, feel sensitive, and cause discolouration. Removing the pulp and sealing the tooth can correct these issues.
You may simply have a painful tooth that other treatments do not help. The diagnosis may be unclear, but chronic tooth pain should not continue. Your dentist will consult with you about your options and only recommend a root canal if it is truly necessary.
Mosman Fine Dental Solutions
If you have a dental issue, contact Mosman Fine Dental today. We offer all general dentistry services as well as cosmetic services, orthodontics, oral surgery and dental implants. If you suspect you may need an emergency root canal, do not delay. Fast, effective treatment can save you from pain and potential infection. And if you have a discoloured tooth, we can help with that as well.