If you have an upcoming appointment for root canal therapy, you might be wondering what to expect after your treatment in terms of your recovery. For the most part, people can return to work or school the day after their treatment. There may be some exceptions, however, so it’s always best to discuss these matters with your dentist.
After root canal therapy, you may feel tired and groggy – especially if you have been prescribed a mild sedative or pain medication. Since this medicine can impair your motor and cognitive function, you will need to have a trusted friend or family member drive you to and from your procedure.
Will I be uncomfortable after root canal treatment?
You may feel some discomfort after your treatment, but it can be managed with over the counter or prescription medication. It’s important to take anti-inflammatory medication recommended by your dentist even if you’re not in pain because preventing swelling will control discomfort within the hours and days following your procedure. You can also apply cold compresses to the outside of your face on the side where you received treatment.
Will I need to change my diet?
In the hours after your procedure, your mouth will likely be numb from the local anesthetics used. It is important to avoid eating anything at this time because it could cause you to bite down too hard on your treatment site. It’s wise to avoid drinking hot beverages, too.
Once the numbness wears off, it is best to eat items like soup or very soft foods like mashed vegetables for the next couple of days. If you need to chew anything, try to chew with the side of your mouth that didn’t receive treatment.
How should I clean my teeth?
Keeping your mouth clean after root canal therapy is important. Be sure to take great care when brushing. Avoid brushing vigorously or applying too much pressure with your toothbrush. Gentle brushing is best.
Give our team at Hulen Crossing Family Dental a call if you have questions about upcoming treatment or need to schedule an appointment.
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When teeth become infected, they must be treated professionally or a patient will ultimately lose their tooth. Root canal therapy is a tooth-saving procedure that allows a person to retain a damaged tooth and enjoy optimal oral function. If your dentist has recommended root canal treatment, it is important to act quickly as the infection within a tooth can spread to neighboring tissue.
What is the root canal?
The root canal is part of a tooth’s anatomy. Inside a tooth is a hollowed area with nerve endings and pulp. A healthy root canal is sealed off from harmful pathogens. When a tooth is decayed, chipped, or cracked, however, infection-causing bacteria can enter the root canal. Since the contents of a root canal cannot fight infection, professional intervention is necessary to save the tooth.
Is root canal therapy necessary?
If your tooth is infected, root canal therapy is necessary to prevent the need for extraction. Without treatment, an infected tooth will eventually develop an abscess. Untreated abscesses produce intense discomfort and can spread to other tissue.
What does root canal therapy entail?
Root canal therapy is an endodontic procedure that removes infected material inside a tooth. Once the pulp and nerve endings are removed, the tooth is irrigated and sealed. Some patients may need a restoration after root canal therapy to protect damaged structures on the exterior surfaces of teeth.
Although patients can experience discomfort with an infected root canal, the procedure itself doesn’t produce sensations much different from receiving a filling. A dentist will use local anesthetics to ensure comfort during treatment.
Will root canal therapy stop a toothache?
Toothaches are a very common sign that a root canal is infected but not all patients experience noticeable symptoms. After root canal therapy, however, patients will be able to resume normal oral function without pain and discomfort.
Call Hulen Crossing Family Dental if you have questions about root canal treatment or if you would like to schedule an appointment.
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You’ve probably heard the phrase “I’d rather have a root canal,” when someone is seriously dreading a task or responsibility. Many people have the misconception that root canal treatment is tremendously painful, when people who actually undergo root canal treatment report that the intervention is no more uncomfortable than having a cavity filled.
Often, the infection that is being addressed by a root canal is causing pain for a patient because it is affecting the sensitive nerve endings in the tooth’s pulp. Therefore, patients may associate root canal treatment with pain, when in reality it results in eliminating the cause of that symptom.
Benefits Of Root Canal Treatment
In performing a root canal, a dentist removes diseased tissue from the innermost portion of the patient’s tooth, thoroughly cleans out the empty root canal chamber to remove any residual bacteria and then fills the empty chamber with a substance that has a consistency similar to rubber. Advanced decay or infection in a tooth’s core can result in tooth death, so performing a root canal can save the tooth. This is always preferable to extraction, whenever possible, as even the most structurally complete prosthetic tooth replacements can’t completely replicate a biological tooth.
Additionally, if the patient is experiencing pain as a result of the bacteria’s infiltration into the tooth’s pulp tissue, removing that diseased pulp tissue via a root canal will give the patient relief from this symptom.
If a root canal has been recommended in your case and you’re indecisive about whether to proceed because of misinformation, we encourage you to contact Hulen Crossing Family Dental and consult with one of our knowledgeable staff members to get the facts about this beneficial treatment option.
A root canal allows for a tooth to remain in place when trauma, decay, or infection has impacted the nerve of the tooth. Since extraction is often the only other option, salvaging the base of a tooth is a better choice. Once a tooth is extracted it must be replaced or the patient risks problems with remaining teeth shifting, chewing, and/or aesthetics if the tooth is located in the smile line.
Symptoms that indicate the need for endodontic therapy (root canal) include pain when biting down, sensitivity to temperature, swelling, or a pimple like sore on the gum tissue.
A light tap on the tooth in question or a shot of cold air are a couple of indicators that root canal treatment is needed. A dental x-ray is often the most reliable way to identify a problem with the nerve of a tooth; one will be needed to show how many roots are involved and their position for the dentist to assure all canals are successfully treated.
Once a tooth has fully erupted, the nerve of the tooth is no longer needed. The root canal process involves creating an entry point in the tooth and using endodontic files to remove all the contents of the root canals (pulp tissue, nerve, and infectious material).
The dental provider will flush each canal and depending on need will either treat with antibiotics or pack with a material that will help provide stability for the tooth. The entry point of the tooth must be sealed; a dental crown is often placed to complete endodontic treatment.
Your dentist may elect to prep your tooth for the crown right away or wait until there is certainty that the root canal was successful. There are situations where retreatment may be needed particularly if infection was involved. A temporary will be used to seal the tooth until a final restoration can be prepared and placed.
A dental crown that seals the tooth will be made to look and function just like surrounding natural teeth; caring for a tooth that has been treated is the same as you did before root canal therapy. Brush twice daily and floss every day; use an antibacterial rinse, if prescribed; and see your dentist every six months for cleaning and dental exam.
For more information or to schedule a visit, contact our team at Hulen Crossing Family Dental today.
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Though most people are anxious about the possibility of needing a root canal, the procedure is sometimes necessary to prevent tooth loss. If you do need to have root canal therapy, it’s good to know exactly why it’s required and what to expect during and after the procedure.
Reasons for Root Canal Therapy
If you have a tooth that has suffered severe damage or decay, or that has been broken off or heavily eroded, your dentist might recommend a root canal. The most common reasons a tooth might require this procedure are:
Severe decay that has reached the pulp chamber
Signs of infection in the tooth’s interior
The pulp is the soft tissue in the center of your tooth. Under normal conditions, it is protected by the hard outer layers of enamel and dentin. However, if the tooth’s exterior is damaged, bacteria can reach the soft pulp, causing inflammation and infection. This infection can then spread to other areas of the mouth, into the jaw and facial bones, and even into the sinuses. To prevent the infection from becoming serious or even life threatening, your dentist will recommend a root canal treatment.
What Happens During a Root Canal?
The purpose of root canal therapy is to remove all the infected tissue from the inside of your tooth. The dentist will drill a hole to provide access, then use special files of varying sizes to remove all the pulp as well as the nerve tissue. Once the pulp is removed, the dentist disinfects the tooth’s interior, then fills it with a special resin. You’ll probably have a crown fitted, either right after the procedure or a few days later, based on your dentist’s recommendation.
After your root canal, you should follow all the instructions you receive regarding aftercare. This can include using cold packs to reduce swelling, taking prescribed painkillers and/or antibiotics, and taking it easy for a day or two. Once your tooth has healed, it will no longer sense temperature or pressure, but will be usable for many years to come.
Contact our office today to schedule an appointment!