Root Canals in Portage, MI
What Is a Root Canal?
Recognizing Root Canal Symptoms & Warning Signs
If you know the early warning signs of a tooth infection or severe tooth decay, there is a better chance that we can save your tooth and prevent more serious damage. Undergoing a root canal will relieve pain, eliminate infection, protect your tooth, and prevent tooth extraction. Call us today to schedule an emergency dentistry appointment if you have any of these root canal symptoms:
- A toothache that comes and goes over weeks or months, or doesn’t go away.
- Severe sensitivity to hot and cold foods and drinks.
- Puffy, inflamed, red, bleeding, or swollen gums.
- Tooth pain combined with a fever or swelling.
- A sore or pimple on your gums that won’t go away.
- A bad taste in your mouth or bad breath.
- A swollen jaw or cheek.
- A discolored or gray tooth.
- A significantly cracked or damaged tooth.
- Pain that worsens when you talk, chew, eat, or if pressure is applied to your tooth or gums.
- A loose tooth.
When & Why You May Need Root Canal Treatment
Preparing for a Root Canal Procedure
A root canal procedure is one of the simplest and most common dental procedures. Most dentists have done thousands of root canal procedures in their careers. Before we schedule your root canal, we will go over the process step by step so that you know exactly what to expect and how to prepare. We will tell you what medications you can and can't take in the days leading up to your procedure. We will also recommend that you stop smoking and avoid alcohol before and after your procedure. On the day of your procedure, we will administer dental sedation to calm your nerves and help you relax. We will also apply a local anesthetic to numb your tooth and surrounding gum tissue. Next, we will use a dental dam to hold your mouth open and control saliva so your tooth stays dry. We will then drill a very small hole into your tooth so that we can clean out your infected dental pulp. Then, we will remove the pulp and clean, disinfect, and shape the root canal. We will inject a special dental putty into the root canal and seal the hole. We will also place a dental root canal crown over the tooth to protect it from bacteria and damage. The entire procedure may take between 30 and 60 minutes. You should have someone drive you home afterward.
The Root Canal Recovery Process
You shouldn't have a lot of pain after a root canal, but you can take over-the-counter pain medication and use a hot compress or ice pack if you are uncomfortable. Most people feel fully recovered in one or two weeks. You should only eat soft foods for the first three or four days after the procedure, and you shouldn't smoke or drink alcohol. You should try not to bite or chew with your treated tooth. It's very important to follow proper dental hygiene after a root canal to avoid infection or complications. You should brush twice per day, floss at least once per day, and use an antiseptic mouthwash. We might also prescribe antibiotics to make sure your infection is completely gone.