If you were told that you need root canal therapy, how would you feel? Some people, owing to popular exaggerations, would feel like running out of the room. Others would probably like to delay the procedure as long as possible. However, the reaction of a well-informed patient might surprise you. He or she might want the treatment to be completed as soon as possible. To help you understand how root canal treatment is beneficial to your oral health, your Ankeny dentist, Dr. Erika Peddicord, is answering your most frequently asked questions about root canal treatment.
Why are root canals performed?
Root canals become necessary when the pulp of a tooth becomes infected. When a tooth is in this state, it may soon die and fall out. The infection is also capable of spreading to other teeth and into the rest of the body, causing illness. Root canal therapy intervenes before the situation worsens by removing the infected pulp and filling the tooth to guard against further infection.
Are root canals painful?
The pain associated with root canal therapy has earned the procedure a less-than-stellar reputation. However, the fact is that root canals are performed under anesthesia so that the tooth is numbed. Following the procedure, patients may feel a dull, throbbing pain in the tooth. This pain can be treated with over-the-counter or prescription pain relievers and typically lasts only a day or two.
In the long run, root canal treatment actually saves patients pain. An infected tooth can become very painful, and if it is ignored, the pain will only worsen. Root canal therapy intervenes before the pain becomes overwhelming and before the infection can spread throughout the mouth.
Can I have the tooth pulled instead?
You could have the tooth pulled, but doing so could cause further dental problems. When a tooth’s root leaves the jawbone, the body stops sending nutrition to the vacated area. Unfortunately, that sometimes means that nearby teeth and the jawbone suffer from malnutrition causing further tooth loss and a loss in jawbone density. Your Ankeny general dentist, Dr. Peddicord, does offer dental implants, which are capable of replacing the tooth and restoring nutrient flow to the area. However, by getting root canal therapy, you can preserve the tooth and save yourself a lot of extra dental work.
Schedule a Visit with Your Ankeny General Dentist
A root canal can save a damaged tooth and seriously improve your oral health. If you require root canal treatment, schedule an appointment with your Ankeny general dentist, Dr. Peddicord, today by calling 515-963-3339. Our 50021 dentist office welcomes patients from Ankeny, Bondurant, Cambridge, Sheldal, Maxwell, Collins, and all surrounding communities.