What Is a Root Canal Treatment & Are They As Painful As People Say?

What Is a Root Canal Treatment & Are They As Painful As People Say?

Dentists, Dental Services, Dental Clinics, False Teeth, Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth

If you are due to have a root canal treatment, you may be slightly afraid or nervous as they are commonly believed to be painful and cause ongoing discomfort. Lucky for you, this is a common misconception: root canal treatments are not painful, but rather they relieve pain.

So what causes a Root Canal?

Contrary to popular belief, poor dental hygiene is not the sole purpose of a root canal. Everyone has unique teeth based on their genetics, some with soft teeth and some with hard teeth. The softer your teeth are, the quicker they will be to decay and the more likely the chance of a root canal. When decay spreads to the pulp chamber of the tooth, often times it will become very sensitive, especially if you drink or eat something very cold or very hot. While this is a symptom for many people who require a root canal, it is not always the case, as decay can often times be removed and filled in without the procedure. It’s only once the decay has spread so far that bacteria is forming in the pulp chamber of the tooth that the procedure is necessary. If left untreated, the bacteria infection can grow in size and start to decay your jaw bone, causing overwhelming pain and possible infection through your entire body. As well as decay, eating hard foods and grinding your teeth can cause fractures which allow bacteria to form inside the tooth.

What is the process of a root canal?

If your tooth’s pulp chamber is exposed to harmful bacteria, you should seek consultation from your dentist as soon as you notice any discomfort or over sensitivity. Your dentist will initially remove the decay from the tooth and determine whether it can be restored. The worse the infection, the more likely that the tooth may have to go. The general process of a root canal involves a local anesthesia to numb the tooth so you don’t feel any pain during the root canal. As the inside of your tooth is infected, your dentist will drill a small hole to access the pulp chamber so they can remove the infected tissue with specially shaped instruments.

Once the canals are disinfected to remove infection and bacteria, they are shaped in accordance to the filling that will replace the previous infected tissue. These root canal fillings are specially designed to fit into the new tooth canal and seal the tooth from any further bacteria entering. Once the root canal filling is in place, it is then sealed with a filling where the entry was made.

Following the procedure, you may be prescribed with an antibiotic to prevent infection. Follow all of your dentist’s instructions carefully in order to avoid any complications. Minor pain and discomfort is common in the few days following the procedure and can be managed with over the counter pain killers. After the procedure, your teeth will require a permanent seal to fix the structure of the damaged tooth. Your dentist will decide whether you need a filling, crown or both to properly restore your tooth. If this isn’t done promptly, you risk further infection as the tooth is still not sealed.

The lack of information about the procedure is most likely the reason so many myths and horror stories of getting a root canal are so popular. If you require a root canal, we hope we calmed your nerves and made you more confident about the procedure. Root canals save your teeth and alleviate the nasty pain that comes along with bacterial infections so don’t put them off if you need one, it will be over before you know it.


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