People fear going to the dentist. They are misled to believe it will be a painful experience, so many people avoid going, even for routine check-ups and cleanings. This leads to the teeth not being taken care of properly, and problems like cavities and decay can become more serious problems.
When a tooth is infected, and we want to save it, a root canal is the best option. A root canal is often thought of as something that no one would ever want to have, and is associated with intense pain. However, a root canal today is pretty painless because of the anesthesia used. The mouth is thoroughly numbed, so the patient does not feel anything while it is happening, and hardly experiences any pain afterward.
Root canals are the last resort treatment to save an infected tooth. First, we numb the tooth and clean out the infected area, which is the root portion of the tooth, or the nerve. The remaining gap or ‘canal’ is filled with a stable material and sealed off. Finally, the tooth is properly restored with a crown as a covering to give it stability. This is done to make sure the tooth is strong enough to function.
There are two reasons why people might come in for a root canal. The first is when they are in pain, and we can alleviate that pain quickly. The second reason a patient may come in is when they do not have pain, but know that their tooth has to be treated. The procedure is done in the same way, and the infection is treated.
Many patients have told me that they feel really good overall after a root canal procedure, and are less fatigued. Taking the infected area of the tooth out makes patients feel better, probably because there is less stress on the tooth and on the surrounding muscles when the infection is removed. A root canal can save you from losing your natural tooth, and can also give you the function you need to chew and speak properly.
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