If not treated on time, root canal infections can lead to intense pain or tooth abscesses.
At North Alabama Smiles, we frequently perform root canal endodontic treatments to save severely cracked, injured, or decayed teeth when the pulp or the soft inner tissue inside a tooth's root canal becomes infected or inflamed.
When Do Patients Need a Root Canal?
When a tooth becomes infected, the infection can spread and reach the core of the tooth. This area is known as the dental pulp and comprises connective tissues, nerves, and blood vessels.
Because this is the sensitive area of the tooth, whenever the pulp becomes infected, the pain a patient feels can be excruciating, requiring immediate treatment.
What Are Some Common Symptoms of Root Canal Infection?
If you experience any of the following oral conditions, you may need a root canal:
- Tooth or gum pain
- Tooth discoloration
- Prolonged sensitivity to heat or cold
- A tooth that is tender when touched
- A tooth abscess
- Pus discharge in your mouth
- Tenderness or swelling in the lymph nodes under your jawbone
What Is the Procedure for Root Canals?
A root canal is an efficient way to prevent the further spread of a tooth infection.
A root canal endodontic treatment works by creating a tiny opening in the tooth to access and remove the infected areas of the tooth pulp. The dental pulp is only necessary during the tooth’s development stage. Once the tooth has fully grown, removing the pulp will not directly harm them.
After the pulp is removed, our dentists will pack the area with a medicated material called gutta-percha. This is a rubber-like substance that helps restore the tooth’s structure. The opening is then sealed with a filling material.
To further strengthen and protect the damaged tooth, we will use a filling or crown. Both crowns and fillings can be fabricated in your natural tooth’s color.
Once the procedure is completed, our dentists will also prescribe antibiotics to treat any lingering infection.
What Is the Recovery Time for Root Canals?
In most cases, mild symptoms, such as discomfort or swelling, can be managed with over-the-counter pain medications. A cold compress can also help alleviate swelling near the impacted tooth.
If you want to know more about the benefits of root canal treatments, visit North Alabama Smiles at 55 Golfview Dr NE #5467, Arab, AL 35016. You can also reach us at (256) 586-8100.