What to Expect During Root Canal Treatment

So, your dentist recommended you get a root canal. Yikes!

Hearing the term “root canal treatment” can be frightening. But this treatment is not that scary of a procedure at all. Before you get terrified about it, perhaps knowing what will happen during the treatment can make it less stressful. At Whitehorse Dental, we want you to understand each step of the process and why it’s important for your oral health.

Learn about what to expect during a root canal treatment, signs you may need it, and why you might need this treatment.

What is Root Canal Treatment?

A root canal procedure is a way to fix a badly infected or damaged tooth. Instead of pulling the tooth out, your dentist cleans out the infected area inside the tooth, fills it, and seals it up. This treatment can save your teeth. Plus, it can help you avoid more serious problems down the line.

Signs You Need Root Canal Treatment

So, how do you know if you need a root canal? Your dentist may have some reasons behind it. But here are some signs to watch for:

  1. Persistent Pain: A tooth should not be painful unless something is wrong. If a tooth has been keeping you from your daily routine, especially when you chew or put pressure on it, you might need a root canal.
  2. Sensitivity to Hot or Cold: If your tooth feels sensitive to hot or cold drinks and the pain doesn’t go away, it could mean you need a root canal.
  3. Swollen or Tender Gums: Healthy gums are typically pink in colour. But gums that are red, swollen, tender, or have a small bump (like a pimple) near a painful tooth can be a sign that you need a root canal.
  4. Tooth Discolouration: A tooth that looks darker than the others might have a problem that requires a root canal.

To be fair, not because you’re experiencing these symptoms doesn’t mean you get a root canal right off the bat. Your dentist still has to examine whether or not a root canal treatment is what your teeth need. 

Why Do You Need Root Canal Treatment?

Here are some of the reasons why your dentist may think a root canal is the best option for your case:

  • Saving Your Tooth: The main reason for a root canal is to save your tooth. Instead of pulling it out, a root canal lets you keep your natural tooth.
  • Preventing Infection: Root canal treatment removes the infected part of your tooth. This procedure can help stop the infection from spreading to other teeth or into your jaw.
  • Relieving Pain: If your tooth is hurting because of an infection, a root canal can make the pain go away.

The Root Canal Treatment Procedure: What to Expect

Knowing what to expect during root canal treatment can make it a lot less scary. Here’s what happens:

Initial Consultation

First, your dentist will check your tooth. They may even take X-rays to see how bad the infection is. They will discuss with you the case of your oral health and make sure a root canal is the right choice. This is also the best time for you to ask questions about the treatment.

Numbing the Area

Once you and your dentist have agreed to it, it’s time to start the procedure. Your dentist will give you a local anaesthetic to numb the area around your tooth. This way, you won’t feel any pain during the procedure.

Accessing the Tooth

Once the area is numb, your dentist will put a small rubber sheet around your tooth to keep it clean and dry. A small hole will be cut on top of your tooth to get to the infected area inside.

Removing the Infection

Using special tools, your dentist will remove the infected or damaged pulp from inside your tooth. Once out, they will clean out the space and shape it to prepare it for filling.

Filling the Tooth

Next, your dentist will fill the space inside your tooth with a material called gutta-percha. This seals the space and prevents more infection. After this, they will close up the hole in your tooth with a temporary filling. And you’re done!

Final Restoration

After the procedure, your dentist will give further instructions on how to care for your root canal treated tooth. You’ll need to come back for another visit to get a permanent filling or crown. This final step protects your tooth and makes sure it looks and works like a normal tooth.

After the Treatment

Taking care of your tooth after root canal treatment is important for healing. Here are some steps to guide you through the healing process:

Follow Your Dentist’s Instructions

Listen to what your dentist tells you about taking care of your tooth. This will help it heal properly and avoid root canal pains.

Keep Up with Good Oral Hygiene

Keep brushing and flossing your teeth regularly. This helps keep your mouth clean and prevents further infections.

Avoid Hard Foods

For a few days after your root canal, don’t chew on hard foods. This helps protect your treated tooth.

Visit Your Dentist

Make sure to go to all your follow-up appointments so your dentist can check your healing progress and make any necessary adjustments.

Save Your Tooth with a Root Canal Treatment

There is no denying that a root canal treatment is an effective way to save your tooth. A badly infected or damaged tooth can benefit from this procedure. Understanding the signs, importance, and what to expect can make you feel more confident and less anxious about getting the treatment you need.

Still concerned about root canal treatments? If you’re still unsure about it, our dental pros can answer all your questions. Our dentists at Whitehorse Dental can take your worries away. Our friendly and professional team is here to help you with all your dental needs. Give us a call at (03) 8838 8820 to schedule an appointment today.