General Dentistry

Is A Root Canal A Dental Emergency?

A root canal is a dental procedure required when you have a very serious tooth infection that has already begun to affect the pulp and nerve of the tooth.

Because of the infection, most people experience very high levels of pain and discomfort, and the only way to effectively handle it is to see a dentist right away. Because of this, a root canal is considered a dental emergency, and most dental practices will be able to see you right away, including Thrive Family Dental.

What Does Root Canal Therapy Look Like?

A root canal is a rather simple procedure, but because most patients experience discomfort right before it’s natural to be a bit anxious about it.

Most common, the procedure will follow these steps:

  • Inspecting the Tooth: The dentist will most likely take an X-ray of the tooth to assess its condition and determine the best course of treatment;
  • Treating the Infection: You will be most likely given antibiotics to treat the infection present in the tooth. Depending on how big the infection is, you might need to go through several visits since the root canal process cannot begin until the infection is gone;
  • Removing the Tissue and Nerve: The dentist will clean the tooth of the infected tissue and even remove the damaged nerve. The process is usually done in one single session, but sometimes it could require multiple visits, although it is rare;
  • Sealing the Tooth: The dentist will apply a seal to the tooth to prevent bacteria from getting in and replace the pulps tissue;
  • Restoring the Tooth: In most cases, the dentist will then apply a dental filling to fill in the hole left by the cavity and restore the tooth’s full function. However, severe infections might require removing too much of the tooth’s tissue, in which case you may need a dental crown to go over the natural tooth. While at this point you should no longer feel any more pain or discomfort, it can take a few weeks to get your crown and fully complete the process.

Do Root Canals Hurt?

Root canals are done only by using a numbing agent to make sure the patient is perfectly comfortable during the procedure. It can be quite painful to remove damaged pulp and nerves, so your dentist will give you an anesthetic.

In some cases, severe infections won’t let the anesthetic take effect. This is when your Wilmington dentist will prescribe a strong antibiotic to fight the infection and postpone the root canal procedure at a later time. 

Are You Dealing with an Infection?

If you’re dealing with pain, discomfort, bleeding, or even have a fever, don’t wait for regular office hours. Call Thrive Family Dental at (910) 240-4797 now for an emergency appointment and Dr. Ben Friberg will see you as soon as possible.

Contact us today for more information.

Do you have a question? Contact us now!

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