Eliminate Your Fear Of The Root Canal
The dreaded root canal. This treatment has long been used to get people properly taking care of their oral health. As a treatment associated with pain and general discomfort, it has worked as a good deterrent for patients. But this usage has given the treatment a bad name, one that is undeserved.
March 30th to April 5th is Root Canal Awareness Week, giving us the perfect opportunity to inform Barrie area patients about this treatment and why it’s used. By clearing up the facts, we believe that our patients will learn that the root canal is not near as scary as they have been led to believe.
Why Have A Root Canal?
First, we must talk about your teeth. Teeth are made up of different layers:
- Enamel: The most well-known of the layers, this material is the hardest substance in the entire body. Enamel works to protect the sensitive inner layers of a tooth from.
- Dentin: The layer directly beneath the enamel is called dentin. This is another defensive layer, which works to protect the pulp of your teeth. This layer also distributes nutrition throughout your teeth.
- Cementum: Connected to the roots of your teeth, cementum works to keep your teeth anchored in place on your jawbone.
- Pulp: The final layer of your teeth is the pulp. Made up of connective tissue, nerve tissue, lymph and blood vessels, and odontoblasts, you will feel pain should the pulp of your teeth become exposed due to a cavity or other tooth related damage.
When tooth decay gets past the more defensive oriented layers of your teeth and reaches the sensitive pulp, one of the ways we can save an infected tooth is by using a root canal.
But What Exactly Is A Root Canal?
According to Colgate, a root canal is “a treatment to repair and save a badly damaged or infected tooth”. During this procedure, Dr. Layth removes the infected pulp from your tooth before clearing out the inner chamber of the tooth and disinfecting it. This section is then filled and sealed in order to keep tooth decay out moving forward.
The entire purpose of a root canal is to prevent the patient from feeling pain, not increase that pain as many patients have been led to believe. The patients who come to us for a root canal are generally experiencing pain due to decay reaching the pulp of their teeth. A root canal will relieve this pain.
A Root Canal Can Save My Tooth?
Having a root canal done could be your only option if you would like to keep your original tooth. It is always recommended that you keep your original teeth when possible. While treatments like dental implants and crowns are now able to perfectly replicate the look and feel of your natural teeth, nothing really beats the original. This is especially true when it comes to the price of treatment.
I’ve Heard The Procedure Is Painful, Is That True?
This is one of the most spread myths floating around about the root canal. The fact is, the treatment itself is relatively painless. Using modern techniques and anesthetics, we can ensure that our patients feel a minimal amount of pain while their procedure is being provided.
In the days directly following your treatment, you are likely to feel some minor aches and sensitivity. This discomfort can be treated with over-the-counter pain medications, or Dr. Adam Layth may provide you with a prescription option.
The majority of the pain associated with this treatment is that which is felt before it begins. When decay reaches the inner layers of your teeth, pain will be the result. Patients may associate the pain they are already feeling with the procedure, which is why the treatment gets a bad name.
Will My Tooth Need Extra Care After A Root Canal?
Generally, there is no additional maintenance required after a tooth has had a root canal. You will still need to practice good oral hygiene. This means proper brushing and flossing, and you will want to attend your regularly scheduled cleanings and checkups.
Some patients require a dental crown to finish their root canal procedure. For these patients, it’s advised that they do not chew or bite with the affected tooth until the crown has been placed. Without the restoration placed, the tooth could break.
How Will I know If I Need A Root Canal?
There are signs you can look for that will clue you in on whether or not a root canal may be required in your near future. Generally, you will want to look for the signs associated with tooth decay. Tooth decay causes an abscess to develop in your tooth, the symptoms of which include:
- Pain and swelling
- Redness of the gums
- A bad taste in your mouth
If you notice these symptoms, then it is important that you get to a dentist as soon as possible. By having your mouth treated early, you can have your tooth decay treated without having a root canal provided. If you wait too long, then the condition may reach the pulp of your teeth where your only treatment option will be to have a root canal performed.
Receive The Oral Health Care You Need At Dr. Layth at Molson Park Dental
If you have felt the warning signs of tooth decay and would like to have your mouth checked, Dr. Layth at Molson Park Dental is ready to help. We can examine your oral health and provide the treatment you need. And, if you require a root canal to treat your teeth, rest assured that we will walk you through the process and make it as painless as possible.
If your condition is severe enough that a tooth needs to be pulled, then we can also provide dental implant treatment. This treatment allows us to provide new, natural-working replacement teeth that will restore beauty and function to your smile. When you are ready to have your oral health checked, contact our office and schedule a consultation with Dr. Layth.