Your tooth enamel is your body’s hardest substance. But the layers below the enamel are softer. Sometimes, teeth get damaged or severe decay develops and the integrity of your tooth is compromised from the inside.
While restorative dentistry gives you the ability to replace missing or damaged teeth with artificial ones, nothing feels or works quite like a natural tooth. Root canals are common, simple dental procedures that are aimed at removing infection and stopping decay so that you can keep your natural tooth.
Mehrnoosh Darj, DDS and our team at Dr. Darj Dental are experts in performing root canals to save teeth. Whether you need a root canal or you’re suffering from tooth pain, trust Dr. Darj. Below, we’ve provided some helpful information on root canals to help you further understand the benefits.
Reasons you might need a root canal
The most common reason for a root canal is treating infection of your tooth’s interior pulp. Pulp can get infected through severe decay or damage.
Signs of a tooth infection include:
- Inflamed gums
- Sensitivity to hot and cold
- Changes in tooth color
- Small bump on gums
Infection can cause pain and it can make tissue inside the tooth die. In some cases, an injury or blow to the face can cause a tooth to die. Any of the above symptoms could be a sign that you might need a root canal.
A root canal saves your natural tooth
If the pulp inside your tooth is damaged, infected, or decaying, a root canal could be the best option for treatment. Dr. Darj and our team begin by taking X-rays of the affected tooth to evaluate the extent of the infection.
We use a local anesthetic around the tooth to help you stay comfortable during your root canal. After the anesthetic takes effect, most patients don’t feel any discomfort. Start to finish, the process should take about an hour.
Dr. Darj then makes a small incision behind the tooth to access the canal. She carefully cleans out the damaged and infected material, cleaning inside the tooth as she goes. Following the root canal procedure, the canal is sealed shut to prevent bacteria from entering again. Sometimes, Dr. Darj recommends placing a crown over the tooth for more protection.
Once the infection is removed, damage to the tooth won’t continue. Teeth that were discolored from injury or infection may return to their natural shade following a root canal. In most cases, root canal treatment preserves the tooth and allows you to keep it for years to come.
Root canals treat tooth infections and many patients are surprised to learn that they actually feel less tooth pain immediately after their root canal procedure than they did beforehand. It’s common for the tooth to be sensitive for a few days after treatment, but any side effects will fade in just a couple of days.
Find out if a root canal could save your tooth. Call Dr. Darj or book an appointment online today.