Save Infected Teeth
Root Canal Therapy
If you have an untreated cavity or a tooth that is broken and isn’t repaired in time, it may become infected and cause you serious pain and discomfort. Without proper treatment, you may be at risk of losing your tooth permanently. At Cornerstone Dentistry, Covington dentist Dr. Keleigh Lascari will get you back to optimal health with gentle root canal therapy. Call us today to schedule an appointment!
Signs of Infected Teeth
Do I Need a Root Canal?
Tooth infections occur when the outside layers of your tooth are broken or worn down by tooth decay or oral trauma, exposing the tender nerve and blood vessel-filled pulp inside your tooth to oral bacteria.
The signs of an infected tooth are fairly easy to recognize. Most commonly, you’ll experience a painful and severe toothache that will not go away after 1-2 days. Sensitivity to heat, cold, and the pressure of chewing are also common. You may also notice swelling, inflammation and discoloration of the gums around the affected tooth. In severe cases, you may even notice swelling of your face and cheek, or a fever.
What to Expect
The Root Canal Process
Root canal therapy typically only takes a single 1-2 hour appointment. First, Dr. Lascari will begin by cleaning and numbing the treatment area. Then, she will trim your tooth to remove any damaged tooth material, and create a small opening in the tooth.
Through this opening, Dr. Lascari will use a variety of specialized dental tools to remove infected tooth material and bacteria. Then, the tooth will be flushed and disinfected to remove any remaining bacteria. After this, the tooth will be filled to restore its structure.
Finally, Dr. Lascari will restore your tooth with a filling or a temporary crown. Depending on the location of your tooth, you may need to come back in a few weeks to have a permanent crown placed to protect your remaining tooth structure.
Do Root Canals Hurt? No!
What You Need To Know
We use powerful numbing agents to ensure that root canal treatment is not painful at all. The process is about as invasive as having a tooth filled, and your mouth will be completely numb during the entire process.
At Cornerstone Dentistry, we even offer oral sedation if you feel it will make you more comfortable. Root canals do not hurt after treatment, either. There is no prolonged healing process, so you can get back to your day-to-day life immediately. Your treated tooth might feel a little bit tender for a day or two, but that’s it.
A root Canal
You don’t really need to do anything special to care for your mouth after root canal therapy. You may experience some minor discomfort after your treatment once your numbing and sedation wear off, but that’s it. You can take some ibuprofen or a similar over-the-counter medication if you feel some pain.
Make sure you don’t eat anything for a few hours, though. If your mouth is still numb, you could end up chewing on your cheeks. If you have a temporary crown to protect your treated tooth, you will also need to try to eat softer foods on that side of your mouth. Avoid chewing tough, chewy, sticky, and gummy foods on that side of your mouth, too, as this could dislodge the crown.
That’s pretty much it! Beyond this, just make sure to come into Cornerstone Dentistry for any further follow-up treatments that you may need to completely restore your tooth and your oral health.
Symptoms You Might Experience
after A root Canal
The only common symptom you’ll experience after your root canal is some pain and discomfort around the treated tooth. This may seem odd, since the root canal process involves removing all of the nerve tissue within your tooth. Why would it hurt?
Well, the tools used to clean out the tooth and prepare it during the root canal process are quite sharp, and can poke and irritate the tissue surrounding the roots of your teeth. Because of this, some minor pain and sensitivity around the tooth are totally normal. It will go away within 2-3 days.
However, if your pain gets worse and does not go away, or you notice inflammation or swelling around the treated tooth, you should contact Cornerstone Dentistry right away for a follow-up. It’s possible that the initial treatment did not fully remove the source of the infection due to a hidden root canal or abnormal tooth structure.
You may need root canal “retreatment” from Dr. Keleigh Lascari to eliminate the remaining infected material. This is relatively rare, however. Depending on the source, first-time root canal therapy is estimated to be between 85% and 97% effective.
when Can I Go Back
To My normal Routine
You can go back to your normal routine pretty much immediately after your root canal treatment. Some patients even opt to get treatment in the morning and to head to work or school right after their root canal procedure. However, if possible, we do recommend taking a day to recover after your treatment, as this will help you stay more comfortable.
There is also no medical reason why you can’t work out or perform heavy physical activity (moving furniture or other heavy objects, etc.) after your root canal treatment. However, you may feel physically worn-out, or experience a bit more pain in your mouth due to your root canal, which can distract you and lead to a sub-par workout experience. Again, it may be beneficial to take a few days to rest and relax until you feel 100% normal.