A root canal is a procedure performed when the nerve chamber of the tooth is infected or inflamed. The infection or inflammation can be from a variety of causes, such as: deep cavity, a crack, or trauma to the tooth. If left untreated (and if there is pulpal (nerve) inflammation), it can cause significant pain or lead to a tooth abscess.
Top signs of needing root canals:
Not all teeth are symptomatic. Sometimes there are no associated symptoms or pain and you may still need a root canal. This is why it is important to see your dentist regularly to make sure you are in the clear and prevent this from occurring.
Root canals are often times performed in one visit, however if the tooth is severely infected it may be completed in two.
Root canal process:
A crown is highly recommended after a root canal is complete. This is because an unrestored tooth is weak and susceptible to fracture. Additionally, if left unrestored for a long period of time, reinfection is possible. Sometimes on front teeth, a crown may not be necessary at first if there is enough healthy tooth structure. This is because the forces placed on front teeth are not as excessive as the weight bearing molars.
Usually after a root canal you may experience some sensitivity, especially if there was pain or an infection before the procedure. Most times you will feel pressure and is recommended to chew on the opposite side and avoid direct contact on the treated tooth. Everyone perceives pain differently so prescription medications are given to relieve any discomfort you may have.