Root canals are often thought of as one of the most unpleasant procedures in dentistry. However, modern dental advancements have made unpleasant root canals a thing of the past. If you have a tooth that is causing you a significant amount of pain, then it’s worth knowing that root canal treatment may be your only option. This blog post will help you understand 3 things about root canals: 1) What causes the pain? 2) How do they save teeth? And 3) Do I need a dental crown after my procedure?
1) What causes the pain?
One of the reasons that root canals are so feared is because people often associate them with excruciating pain. While it’s true that some patients experience severe pain, this type of pain is generally caused by a pulp infection. Pulp infections are caused by bacteria that enter the tooth and cause the pulp to become infected. The pulp is composed of blood vessels, nerves, and connective tissues, so inflammation ultimately causes a significant amount of pain. This infection is capable of spreading to other teeth and can cause some severe pain symptoms.
A traditional root canal involves removing the infected pulp from inside your tooth using special dental tools. Since dental anesthetics are used during a root canal, you should not feel anything. Once the infected pulp is removed, you should also experience a decrease in pain when you regain feeling.
After the root canal procedure has been completed, you should expect some soreness around the affected area for 24-48 hours while the inflammation inside your tooth slowly decreases. After that initial period of time, your pain will usually subside.
2) How do they save teeth?
When the inside of your tooth becomes infected, the infected tissue will need to be removed to prevent the infection from spreading and causing the tooth to fall out. Although other types of infections can be treated using antibiotics, pulp infections cannot be reached through the bloodstream since they are in the tooth. Simply stated this means that the only ways to remove the infection are to remove the infected tissue or the entire tooth. Root canals allow your dentist to fully remove the diseased tissue from inside the tooth, which eliminates the need for extraction.
Besides the fact that most people don’t want to undergo a tooth extraction, preserving your natural teeth are always the preferred option. Losing even a single tooth can cause additional complications that can be prevented by simply having a root canal.
3) Do I need a dental crown after my procedure?
Once the root canal procedure has been completed, you will need to have a dental crown. This is because the interior of your tooth is hollowed out during treatment. Although it will be filled with a rubber-like substance, root canal therapy-treated teeth are weaker structurally than normal teeth. A dental crown is a protective cap that is placed over your tooth after the root canal treatment has been completed. It’s important to place a protective covering on top of your newly restored tooth so it can fully heal and prevent any further damage from occurring in the future.
As you can see, root canal treatment is a great option for patients who are experiencing severe pain due to an infected tooth. If this sounds like something that has been affecting your daily life, then it’s time to make an appointment with our office so we can help provide the relief you deserve!
Dr. Alina Huang has been practicing dentistry in Manhattan for the last eight years. She was born in New York City, and raised in California where she received her Bachelor’s degree at UCLA, and her D.D.S. at the University of the Pacific in San Francisco. She then made her return to NYC where she completed her General Practice Residency at Montefiore Medical Center and has been working in private practice ever since. She continues her learning by attending courses to stay current with the latest advancements in dentistry and refine her skills.