Restore Your Strong, Healthy Smile
What is a Root Canal?
Root canal treatment is designed to eliminate bacteria from the infected root canal, prevent reinfection of the tooth and save the natural tooth. When one undergoes a root canal, the inflamed or infected pulp is removed and the inside of the tooth is carefully cleaned and disinfected, then filled and sealed.
Dr. Mullins and Dr. Owen will start with an x-ray and a thorough exam of your tooth, checking your bite pressure and nerve response. Our team will ask you many questions about your oral health throughout our exam.
Removing the infected or inflamed tissue is only part of the root canal process. During your procedure, we will also protect the tooth with:
When Do I Need a Root Canal?
Root canal treatment is necessary when the pulp, the soft tissue inside the root canal, becomes inflamed or infected. There are a whole host of reasons why you might need root canal treatment:
- Severe pain while chewing or biting
- Pimples on the gums
- A chipped or cracked tooth
- Lingering sensitivity to hot or cold, even after the sensation has been removed
- Swollen or tender gums
- Deep decay or darkening of the gums
In addition, an injury to a tooth may cause pulp damage even if the tooth has no visible chips or cracks. If pulp inflammation or infection is left untreated, it can cause pain or lead to an abscess.
There are many clinical reasons for needing root canal treatment, but there are also countless practical reasons why saving the natural tooth is a wise choice. Treatment helps you maintain your natural smile, continue eating the foods you love and limits the need for ongoing dental work. With proper care, most teeth that have had root canal treatment can last a lifetime.
What To Expect After a Root Canal?
Following your root canal, your tooth will stand a much better chance of remaining intact. The dentist may place a crown on the affected tooth to cover up incidental imperfections or discoloration.
If you experience pain do not be alarmed. It is common for patients to experience one or several days of mild discomfort after a root canal. This is a normal reaction that can be effectively treated with over-the-counter pain relievers. Your doctor may also prescribe a stronger medication, if necessary. To prevent further decay, continue to practice good dental hygiene such as brushing and flossing.
Eating After a Root Canal
Deciding what to eat after a root canal procedure can be challenging because everyone reacts to the procedure differently. As a result, navigating what you can and cannot eat after a root canal can be problematic.
Patients are urged to eat soft foods for two to three days following a root canal treatment. They are also asked to avoid foods that are too hot or cold. Also, when eating afterward, it is best to chew slowly on the side of your mouth opposite from where you were treated.
Fortunately, just because you need to eat carefully after a root canal doesn’t mean you can’t eat foods you enjoy.
Here is a list of suggested foods to eat after a root canal.
Patients recovering from a root canal are also discouraged from drinking alcohol, eating anything spicy, crunchy, or excessively chewy, like gum or taffy.
Should I Visit A Dentist After My Root Canal Procedure?
Be sure to make a follow-up appointment with your dentist after your root canal. Root canal procedures are complex, and the tooth may take considerable time to heal afterward. During the healing period, your tooth is sensitive and vulnerable and at greater risk of fracturing, so scheduling a follow-up appointment to make sure that your tooth is healing properly and ensure there are no post-procedure complications.
Take the First Step and Request an Appointment
Dr. Mullins, Dr. Owen and our team will help ease your worries and provide a welcoming, comfortable environment for your visit. We use state-of-the-art dental technology to make the root canal very comfortable and as pain-free as possible. At My Family Dentistry we believe our patients deserve treatment that is relaxing, effective, and pain-free.
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