One procedure that many patients dread hearing is root canal. Root canals have probably one of the worst reputations. However, this reputation might not be fully deserved. Root canals have their reputation purely because of the old way they were performed, but over the last few decades the procedure has changed quite a bit. And nowadays root canal procedures are much more comfortable than in the past. In this article, we will cover when you need a root canal, how to prevent needing one, and how the procedure works.

When Do I Need A Root Canal & Root Canal Symptoms

The reason you need a root canal is usually because of decay. When sugars from food mix with bacteria in our mouths it can lead to decay that spreads throughout our teeth. Over time that decay can spread past the dentin which is what would cause a cavity. A cavity is usually fixed be drilling away the decay and then filling the hole with resin or another material. But if the decay spreads past the dentin and into the root of the tooth you will need a root canal. Like with a filling you will need the decay removed and the tooth filled with resin or another material to protect the tooth. 

Some common symptoms of decay in your tooth root include tooth pain and tooth aches. However it is very common for decay to spread without noticing. That is why it is so important to see your dentist frequently. Seeing your dentist every six months can ensure that early warning signs of dental decay are treated. 

How Do I Prevent A Root Canal

There are a few things you can do to prevent root canals. First and foremost, you need to practice good dental habits. Brushing your teeth twice a day, flossing once a day, and taking care of your teeth in general can prevent the spread of tooth decay. Additionally, you should make sure to limit foods and drinks that are associated with tooth decay. Foods with high sugar, acidity, or starches can increase the decay rate of your teeth. Finally, and most importantly, you need to see a dentist twice a year. Seeing a dentist helps in two important ways. During an exam any teeth that are showing of signs of damage can be caught early before the decay spreads. Additionally a professional cleaning and treatments like sealants can protect your teeth much better than just brushing and flossing. 

What Happens During A Root Canal

During a root canal your mouth is numbed similar to how it would be before getting a tooth pulled or a cavity filled. A drill is then placed at the top of the tooth that goes down into the root. The decay is removed from the effected root canal and the canal is then filled. Often, a dentist will also attach a dental crown to the top of the tooth to replace the chewing surface. Afterwards you may feel some discomfort as the anesthesia wears off. 

Schedule Restorative Dental Services

If you need restorative dental services for you or a member of your family, please give us a call. We would be happy to help with a variety of dental treatments for you and your family.