Our teeth, which appear otherwise hard from the outside, have a very soft inner portion comprising of nerve fibers known as root canals. This part is known as the pulp of the tooth. When there is an infection in the pulp tissue, it can become a cause of pain and sensitivity in the tooth, and if it is not treated in time, it can cause nerve death and eventually tooth loss.
Some of the most common symptoms of a root canal infection are:
- Pain upon biting
- Sensitivity to hot and cold foods
- An abscess on the gums
- Severe toothache
- Tenderness or swelling in the gum near the tooth
Root canal therapy is one of the most routine and effective dental treatments and shouldn’t be put off or feared since the treatment itself is much less painful than the pain caused by the infection. The procedure begins with an injection of local anesthesia. Then, a small opening is made in the tooth surface to access the pulp chamber. Using tiny dental instruments, the dead and decayed tissue is removed, and the tooth is filled with an inert, biocompatible material. The tooth is then sealed to prevent further infection and a crown may be placed over it to restore it. We may prescribe antibiotics and painkillers to allow proper and painless healing.
Sometimes, a tooth treated using root canal therapy may get re-infected. Retreatment is performed in such cases to save the tooth. This may happen if the tooth has untreated or hidden canals. The treatment involves removal of the old filling material under the effect of local anesthesia. The canals are then cleaned and flushed to get rid of the infection and are filled with a new filling. A crown is placed over the retreated tooth to protect it.
If you are experiencing the symptoms of a root canal infection, call the experts at Complete Family Dentistry. We can be reached at (954) 374-6777.