Over 75% of adults have dental anxiety or fear. The most common reason for their apprehension is pain.
Almost any dental procedure can hurt because the mouth is a sensitive area, but one has one of the worst reputations. The question begs to be asked; are root canals painful?
Read on to learn what the surgery involves and if your mouth will be hurting the entire time.
When and Why Would I Need a Root Canal?
As the name suggests, a root canal is necessary when bacteria get into the root of a tooth and cut off its blood supply. It usually occurs after a major cavity exposes the nerve in the tooth’s center. Trauma or tooth fractures are other causes.
You may go for a long time without seeing any symptoms. When you do see them, they can include the following:
- Pain or irritation when biting down
- Bone loss
- Sensitivity to temperature
- Tooth discoloration
- Inflammed gums
- Pus drainage
Failing to treat the infection can make your face and neck swell or cause you to lose teeth. It can even become septic and spread throughout your bloodstream.
Extraction is the only viable alternative, but a root canal can let you keep your teeth. It’s preferred by 67% of patients.
What Is the Procedure Like?
Preparing for a root canal is similar to other dental surgeries. Avoid alcohol or tobacco, and get enough food and sleep. Take painkillers or use relaxation techniques if necessary.
The surgery involves several steps, including:
- Physical examination
- Drilling into the tooth
- Removing infected pulp tissue
- Shaping and filling the canal
- Installing a crown
The process takes 1-2 visits, and the length of each one depends on which teeth need to be repaired. Molars have more roots to repair and take the longest. Incisors and canines have the fewest and don’t take as long to heal.
Is a Root Canal Painful?
The answer to the million-dollar question here is no. Local or general anesthesia and sedatives work together to make the procedure relatively painless.
Recovering from a root canal may involve a few days of discomfort, tenderness, or sensitivity. They should be mild enough to be treated with over-the-counter pain medications. If your pain doesn’t ease or you experience strange symptoms such as rashes or hives, speak to your dentist as soon as possible.
Where Can I Get A Dental Procedure Like a Root Canal?
Root canals are a dreaded dental procedure with a horrible reputation. Medical advances have made them less painful and a better alternative to extraction.
The procedure removes an infected root deep within the pulp of your teeth. Signs that you may need one include sensitivity to temperature, swelling, and discoloration.
The surgery takes a few hours, and sedation will make you unaware of what’s happening. You’ll have sensitivity for a few days. After that can be eased with pain medication.
Bloomfield Dental Designs can help you maintain a beautiful, healthy smile. Book an appointment today.