“Can my teeth be saved?” That is one of the first questions many people ask when they come to our Allen, TX dental practice. Very often the answer is yes, with the help of endodontic therapy. You might not be familiar with that term, but chances are you’ve heard of the procedure by its more common name – root canal treatment.
The truth about root canal therapy
If the thought of getting a root canal makes you shudder, we understand. It may be the most feared procedure in dentistry. We have some good news for you: those fears are rooted in myths, misconceptions, and very outdated ideas of what endodontic treatment entails. Ironically, the most prevalent myth is that root canals cause pain, when the exact opposite is true.
What does a root canal treatment accomplish?
- Stops the pain
- Saves your natural tooth
- Removes infection
- Restores oral health
About the procedure
Root canal therapy is very precise and efficient. The process is like a cavity filling, except deeper within the tooth. First your dentist will numb the area, then create a small opening in the upper part of the tooth. Specialized tools are used to remove damaged tissue and infection inside the tooth, and then it is sterilized. The root canal is then filled and sealed. Lastly, the tooth will be restored with a beautiful porcelain crown.
Do you need root canal therapy?
The answer depends on the condition of dental pulp, which is the nerves and other soft tissues inside your tooth. Of course, you can’t look in the mirror and see if it is damaged or infected, so you need a dental examination to know for sure. However, there are some good indications that root canal therapy might be needed. These include:
- Abscess, pimple, or sore on the gums
- Pain, tenderness, and swelling of gum tissue
- Darkening of the tooth, while other teeth are unaffected
- Pain that is triggered by hot or cold foods
- Chronic or recurrent toothache, especially when chewing or applying pressure to the tooth
The worst thing you can do is delay treatment. If you need root canal therapy, the pain will only get worse the longer you wait. Furthermore, decay spreads, so if it hasn’t reached the pulp yet, it probably will soon. That means postponing treatment could cause you to need a root canal. Call us today at (469) 293-2007.