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The Skinny on Root Canals

March 29, 2021

It is highly likely that reading about root canals is not on your list of fun things to do. So we are filling you in on two things we think you do want to read about: how to avoid one, and if you need one, why you shouldn’t worry about the process.

Why a Root Canal can be Necessary

When the nerves within a tooth’s root have been damaged by either trauma or decay, a root canal is required. To do this, the damaged tooth would be treated in almost the same manner as a filling, except the treatment would extend to the roots of the tooth.

The procedure being painful is the biggest misconception about the treatment. In truth, the real pain comes from ignoring an aching tooth for so long that the trauma or decay progresses and becomes overwhelming. To avoid this, seek regular dental visits and early treatment when experiencing tooth discomfort.

To Avoid a Root Canal Keep These Two Things in Mind
  • Pay Attention to the Pain: When your teeth bother you, your body is saying something isn’t right in your mouth. For example, if you experience hot and cold sensations on a regular basis, or pressure sensitivity that comes when eating or closing your mouth completely, these could be signs that the nerve in your tooth is traumatized or damaged. Don’t ignore these signals, and contact us right away.
  • Address Anxiety and Stress: It has been said that grinding and clenching your teeth is the rough equivalent of having a 250-lb. linebacker sitting on your teeth at night. This can severely damage your teeth, aggravate the nerve, and cause bone loss and headaches. Please call us if you wake up with headaches in the morning, and ask whether we believe you might be a grinder. We can tell simply from looking at your teeth and your X-rays.

You’d be surprised at what we can do to remove nerve trauma when caught early!

Addressing (and Busting) the Root Canal Pain Myth

Advances in dental technology and a highly increased attention to chairside manner here at Lakefront Family Dentistry, have resulted in root canal treatment that is of no more discomfort than having a tooth filled. Here are some of the reasons why this is true:

  • Electric drills that spin faster and vibrate less: In the big fight against drills of the past, today's drills are winning the appreciation of patients.
  • A more comprehensive array of anesthesia: New medicines allow for greater control over numbing localization as well as the length of time needed for anesthetic.
  • Digital X-rays and 3-D imaging: The latest dental imaging solutions allow us to diagnose root canal cases more accurately and reduce the potential for mistaken retreatment.
  • Less time in the chair: Perhaps the best part is that in some cases, the time for this procedure has decreased to only an hour or two.

Root damage can be avoided if you practice responsible oral health and hygiene. Schedule your next dental appointment today and we can make sure everything in your mouth is healthy and happy. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us at Lakefront Family Dentistry today!

Happy Smiles, Happy Life!

Warm regards,

Dr. Bellingham