While root canals are a common dental treatment, they can inspire a lot of fear in folks who have never had one before. Does a root canal hurt? Are there any risks associated with this procedure? Do root canals require anesthesia? These are just some of the questions that patients who visit their dental specialist near Irvine ask on a regular basis. Below we have 5 questions to ask your dentist before a root canal.
5 Questions to Ask Your Dentist Before a Root Canal
In order to help you stay informed and educated about the benefits of root canals, our experts have designed a list of 5 questions to ask your dentist before a root canal. Make sure you fully understand the details of this treatment so you can continue growing and maintaining your oral health.
Question 1: Do Root Canals Hurt?
Root canals are mostly feared because they are associated with extreme pain. While there may be some swelling and bleeding following the procedure, the root canal process itself does not hurt too much. Dentists typically numb the treatment area so patients do not feel anything other than mild discomfort during the process. Medication and sedation options are available to help put the patient more at ease and reduce the risk of pain.
Question 2: How Do Root Canals Work?
Understanding the root canal process can help patients be less afraid of it. Depending on your condition, whether due to infection or gum disease, your dentist may need to perform a root canal to “deaden” the tooth. This disconnects the tooth from the nerve, preventing infection from spreading into the body’s bloodstream. The dentist will scoop out the pulp of the tooth and replace it with a filling. Then, your mouth will be bandaged and the procedure will be complete.
Question 3: What are Aftercare Instructions?
Your mouth might be feeling sore, swollen, and tender for a couple of days following your treatment. Make sure you do not chew any hard objects on the side of your mouth where you had your root canal done. Make sure you keep your mouth clean and invest in daily brushing and flossing. Your dentist can prescribe pain medications to help you feel more comfortable while the swelling goes down. Contact your dental expert if you experience prolonged pain, excessive swelling, tooth pain, or foul odors in your mouth. If you have additional concerns or questions, make sure to contact your dentist ASAP as well.
Question 4: When Can I Return to Work?
Some root canal procedures are mild enough that the patient feels good enough to go back to work the following day. But everybody is different, and everyone reacts differently to pain. This procedure may require you to take a day or two off work, which you should plan for even if you are feeling much better after your root canal. Make sure to stay in communication with your dentist so you can get updated on any future recovery requirements.
Question 5: Is Anesthesia Available?
Root canals are not very painful because the dentist uses sedation throughout the duration of the treatment process. In most cases, your dental team will apply mild topical anesthesia to the area so you do not feel much while the procedure is going on. Higher doses of anesthesia are available for those who are still too uneasy to be awake or who have extreme dental anxiety.
Access the Best Root Canal Options Today
Our Irvine specialists want to emphasize the importance of treating dental issues right away. If you have prolonged tooth pain or a spreading infection, you may need to sign up for root canal treatment for infected teeth. Get in touch with our dental experts today to learn more about how root canals work, how to navigate the recovery process, and how to treat severe dental infections right away.