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A root canal treatment can be due to tooth decay, extensive dental procedures, a chip or crack in the tooth, or trauma. This can cause the pulp, which contains the nerves, blood vessels and connective tissue to become inflamed and possibly infected.
Once you find out you have an infection, you may need antibiotics to avoid the spread of infection. Antibiotics may also help with pain before and after the root canal treatment. Also, try to avoid chewing with the tooth and ensure you practice good oral hygiene by flossing and brushing normally.
During the procedure you will be completely anesthetized and will only feel gentle tugging or pressure. Postoperative discomfort will be managed with appropriate analgesics. We recommend a soft diet and personalized home care instructions.
When a tooth becomes infected there may or may not be pain. The area will generally be sensitive to hot/cold stimulation, biting down and touching. An x-ray of the area may show an abscess or a pimple, indicating an infected tooth. Previous trauma to the area or a fractured tooth can also be a sign of an infected root.
If the infection is not cleaned out at the tooth, the bone and surrounding tissue may become infected and an abscess can form. Sometimes systemic symptoms like fever and acute infection in other areas of the body can occur. Without root canal treatment, the tooth will need to be extracted. After an extraction the area will need a dental implant, bridge, or removable partial bridge.
A root canal can typically last a lifetime if it is properly protected. After the treatment, a crown is placed to prevent further fracture of the tooth. Contact your dentist within 2 week to arrange a filling and a crown.