Root canals are considered one of the most intimidating procedures at the dentist. Sadly, this endodontic treatment is surrounded by many false beliefs and assumptions. If this procedure has been recommended for you, we invite you to ask questions before you start to worry, dread or delay this important dental procedure. Not only can a root canal save your dying and infected tooth, but the procedure itself is not as bad as you may think.
What Do Root Canals Accomplish?
A root canal is the procedure of choice when a tooth is cracked, decayed or diseased into its tooth pulp (center). During root canal therapy, the diseased pulp is carefully removed, and the tooth center is thoroughly disinfected and sealed with a special filling material. A crown is often needed after a root canal to help the tooth regain full strength. Therefore, root canals are meant to eliminate an infection as well as protect the tooth from future infection.
Are Root Canals Painful?
A common yet very unfortunate misconception of root canals is that they are painful. Rest assured that root canal therapy is typically no more painful than getting a dental filling. Modern dental anesthetics and sedation dentistry are used to keep patients comfortable and relaxed. Root canals are meant to bring you out of pain, not induce it.
Can the Tooth Just be Extracted Instead?
Patients who are in severe pain or on a budget may think that just getting the tooth pulled is the easiest and cheapest option, especially if the infected tooth is in the back of the mouth. However, this is a mistake. If a root canal is recommended, that means your dentist believes that the tooth can be saved and it is always better (and more cost effective) to keep your natural teeth. Once a tooth is removed, you’ll need to consider a dental implant or other restorative dentistry option – which can be a lengthy, pricey and more invasive process.
Is There Harm in Delaying RCT?
Remember that root canals are designed to save a tooth that has been invaded by decay or severe infection. Putting off endodontic treatment will only make your symptoms worse and allow the bacteria in the tooth to multiply. Waiting too long to have your root canal therapy could result in the inability to save the tooth altogether.
At Avalon Dental Group, we take extra measures to ensure our patients retain a healthy and confident smile for a lifetime. If you have root canal symptoms such as extreme tooth sensitivity, swelling, painful chewing or dark discoloration, please give us a call. We promise a comfortable, patient-centered experience at our Sugar Land office.