Do I Need Root Canal Treatment?
You know the feeling: You bite into a cold scoop of ice cream, only to have shocks of pain reverberate through your jaw, and perhaps linger for a while after.
Could it be tooth sensitivity, a cavity—or do you need root canal treatment? No matter the cause, it’s vital to visit the dentist as soon as you experience pain. Dr. Bains and our highly trained team will help you get to the root of the problem. Learn more about our emergency dental treatment procedures.
Root Canal Infection Symptoms
You may need root canal therapy if you experience these signs and sensations:
- Intense tooth pain when biting down
- Extreme sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures
- Gum swelling and tenderness
- Discomfort in the head or neck region
- Tooth discolouration
Causes of Root Canal Infection and Inflamation
So, when exactly do you need to get a root canal? The answer lies in the pulp of your teeth. Deep under the outer enamel, and beneath the inner layer called dentin, this tissue contains nerves and blood vessels that nourish healthy development.
Sometimes, the pulp can become inflamed or infected. Left untreated, the condition can worsen, becoming painful and eventually turning into an abscess. At this point, the pulp has died and needs to be removed with root canal therapy. Since these nerves and blood vessels are only necessary for growing the tooth, the enamel and dentin can still survive, nurtured by the surrounding tissue.
Causes of tooth abscess can include:
- Deep cavities
- Repeated dental treatment
- Tooth breakage
- Trauma to the face
- Clenching or grinding your teeth
Get Root Canal Treatment in Edmonton
Leveraging X-ray technology, we can diagnose if your tooth pain stems from an abscessed pulp. We’ll examine the root canal shape and find any infections in the surrounding bone. Once we’ve located the abscess, we’ll begin the root canal therapy.
Ideal for many patients, root canals can be highly beneficial and successful:
- Allow you to keep your own tooth
- Avoid the cost of dental replacements
- Treat only the problem area, without affecting the surrounding teeth
We may prescribe antibiotics to relieve pain and swelling, but this is only a small part of the solution. Since blood no longer flows to the tooth, a root canal is the only way to clear the infection. Be sure to book your appointment with us so we can get you back to a healthy and pain-free state.
How Root Canal Therapy Works
If the procedure is necessary, don’t stress—patients often report little to no pain, comparing the discomfort to a tooth filling. Our compassionate team will complete your root canal treatment in a safe and professional manner:
- We administer a local anesthetic to the area surrounding the tooth.
- To isolate and dry the molar, we place a dental dam around it.
- Then, we drill a small access hole into the tooth and locate the root canal.
- Using small files and antibacterial rinses, we clear out the infection.
- After cleaning and drying the canals, we seal the tooth with adhesive cement, a rubber compound called gutta-percha and a filling (temporary or permanent).
- Usually, we can complete the procedure in one visit, but if the infection is extensive, a second or third appointment may be needed.
- Every six to 12 months, we examine the healing progress of the tooth. Two years is the typical recovery time.
When to Get a Tooth Extraction
In certain instances, your tooth may be badly damaged by decay, cracks or breakage. If this is the case, tooth removal may be necessary, rather than a root canal. This will prevent the spread of any infection or further damage to surrounding areas.
Dr. Bains will guide you toward the best solution for replacement:
- Bridges: artificial teeth fused between two crowns
- Implants: a crown anchored in the jaw with the equivalent of a titanium root
- Partial Dentures: can be taken in and out of the mouth
Do you need root canal therapy or tooth extraction treatment in West Edmonton? Contact us or book a consultation online today. We’ll keep your smile healthy for years to come.