What is a Root Canal and How Can My Dentist Help?

Tooth pain can cause anxiety, especially when you’re worried about what to do and how much it will cost. It can be scary to consider that you’ll need an invasive procedure or even lose the tooth, but it’s important to know that your dentist is here to help. Tooth pain can indicate a serious issue, but your dentist can intervene and help preserve your tooth’s function with the right steps. If your tooth hurts or is sensitive or swollen, it might be the result of decay, which means it can be easily fixed through root canal therapy.

Tooth decay begins to happen when bacteria eat away at the enamel, and you can often tell this is happening when it hurts to bite or chew. This is because the enamel is weakened and there’s less protection between the underlying nerves and the outside world. When the decay becomes advanced, it can affect the deep structures of the tooth, including blood vessels and nerves, causing the patient pain even when you don’t put pressure on it. When detected early, tooth decay can be easily corrected with a simple composite filling or similar restorative technique. When the decay becomes an infection that spreads beyond the outer layers of the enamel and invades the pulp and root, root canal therapy is usually necessary.

At Keys Dental Specialists, we use the latest technology and equipment to make sure your root canal procedure is as non-invasive and pain-free as possible.

A root canal is common dental procedures performed by an general dentist or endodontist. Root canal therapy is designed to eliminate bacteria that have infected the internal canal system of a tooth and prevent reinfection in the future. This treatment helps save your natural tooth and restore its function through minor surgical techniques. Additionally, root canal treatment can effectively relieve pain associated with a damaged or infected nerve. If you experience lasting pain or sensitivity, Dr. Levine can recommend your next steps. At Keys Dental Specialists in Key West, FL, we use the latest technology and equipment to make sure your root canal procedure is as non-invasive and pain-free as possible.


Signs You May Need a Root Canal

Lingering Pain

Serious pain when you eat or put pressure on an area can be a sign of infection. Additionally, if the area still hurts after the pressure subsides (or even without pressure), you should see your dentist.

Hot or Cold Sensitivity

If it’s extremely uncomfortable or even painful when you eat hot or cold foods, it can be a sign that decay has begun to expose the underlying nerves. This is especially true if the pain or sensitivity lingers even after you’re done eating.

Swelling in the Gums

Gums that are swollen or have small bumps around the area where you experience pain can indicate that you’ll need to see your dentist to discuss whether you need a root canal.

Darkening of the Tooth

A change in color, especially darkening, is a sign that the tooth may be infected. If the tooth appears gray against the surrounding teeth, it can mean that the underlying structures have begun decaying.

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