A root canal is a dental procedure that concerns removing the infected or damaged pulp from a tooth and sealing it to control further damage or infection. Root canals are frequently advised when the pulp inside the tooth becomes infected or inflamed due to deep decay, trauma, or cracks. If you’re experiencing tooth pain or sensitivity, you may wonder when root canal is needed. This article will discuss seven telltale symptoms that indicate root canal need.
What is a root canal?
In a root canal procedure, decay is removed, and the pulp is preserved. It is like a little Roto-Rooter procedure, cleaning out the decay and preserving the tooth. The pulp consists of blood vessels, nerves, and connective tissue. It plays a crucial role in tooth growth and development. When the pulp becomes infected or inflamed, it can cause severe pain and even lead to tooth loss if left untreated.
During a root canal, the dentist or endodontist will numb the area around the affected tooth and create a small hole in the top of the tooth to access the pulp. They will then extract the infected or damaged pulp and clean out the inside of the tooth. After removing the pulp, the tooth is sealed with a filling or crown to prevent further damage or infection.
Symptoms that Indicate Root Canal Need
Here are seven telltale symptoms that may indicate root canal need:
Tooth Pain or Sensitivity
If you’re experiencing severe tooth pain or sensitivity, it may be a sign that the pulp inside the tooth is infected or inflamed. The pain may be constant or intermittent and worsen when you bite or chew.
Swollen or tender gums
Swollen or tender gums around a tooth can indicate an infection that has spread from the tooth’s pulp to the surrounding tissues. The gums may be red, swollen, and painful to the touch.
Discoloration or darkening of the teeth
A tooth that has become discolored or darkened may be a sign of damaged or infected pulp. The discoloration may result from blood vessels inside the tooth breaking down or the pulp dying.
Cracked or damaged teeth
A cracked or damaged tooth can allow bacteria to enter the pulp and cause infection or inflammation. If you have a cracked or damaged tooth, you may experience pain when biting or chewing or be sensitive to hot or cold temperatures.
Persistent bad breath or taste
If you have persistent bad breath or taste in your mouth, it may indicate an infection in the tooth or surrounding tissues. The bacteria from the disease can produce an odor or taste that is difficult to remove with regular brushing and mouthwash.
If you feel you have lost a tooth, this could be a sign of severe tooth decay or a pulp infection. A loose tooth may also result from trauma to the tooth or tissues nearby.
If you’re experiencing these symptoms, you must see a dentist or an endodontist immediately. A root canal may be necessary to remove the damaged or infected pulp and save the tooth from further damage or loss. Early intervention is crucial to prevent complications and ensure results.