A root canal is a dental procedure used to repair and save a tooth that is severely damaged or decayed. In the past, many dental patients have feared having a root canal because they have heard horror stories of the procedure. However, what every dentist wants you to know is that a root canal procedure is not painful – an infected tooth is painful. Any pain that people associate with a root canal is actually the pain that they experience from the injured or decaying tooth itself. A root canal is done to relieve pain and to restore the oral health of a person’s mouth.
When the root of a tooth becomes infected, that tooth and any neighboring teeth are compromised. The root of a tooth is what provides its life, and when it has become compromised it needs to receive proper treatment right away. When the inner layers of the tooth are damaged or diseased, the health of the mouth is compromised because any oral infection can easily spread through the tissues. Having a root canal removes the decay or infection in order to restore the health of the tooth, thus restoring the health of the entire mouth.
Root canals are painless procedures done under anesthesia. They have often been one of the most dreaded dental procedures because of the pain that people associate with a root canal. However, this fear and anxiety is misplaced. A diseased, decaying, injured, or infected tooth is incredibly painful because the nerves within the tooth are being affected. A root canal is done to remove and correct whatever is causing the pain within the tooth!
If you have a tooth that needs a root canal, please do not put off having the procedure. The longer the procedure is postponed, the longer your tooth will cause you pain and the further the infection will grow inside your mouth.