doing-a-root-canalDamage can happen at any time to your teeth. Simple day-to-day activities can lead to accidents, playing sports, and failure to maintain daily oral care can all lead to chipped, cracked, or decayed teeth that will need repair by your dentist if not spotted early on. Learning about the causes of damaged teeth, the signs and symptoms of spotting a root canal, and how to prevent needing a root canal can not only help you to maintain your oral hygiene, but also save you time and money in the long run.

What is a Root Canal?
There are two basic parts that make up each tooth- the crown and the root. The crown is the part that sits above the gum line and is visible when you smile or open your mouth. The root of your tooth lies below the gum line and contains your tooth’s nerves. Each root is surrounded by soft tissue commonly known as the pulp, which provides the nourishment your tooth needs to remain healthy. In the event that the root or pulp become infected or decayed, a root canal can be performed to help to prevent the tooth from occurring further damage. During a the procedure, the root and pulp of the tooth are removed, the inside of the tooth is cleaned out, and then it is sealed for protection.

What Damages the Tooth in the First Place?
Several things can damage our teeth on a day-to-day basis. Repeated dental procedures on your teeth, a cracked or chip tooth, oral trauma, and the most common- tooth decay can all affect the health of our teeth. When a tooth becomes damaged or decayed, infection begins to form and can cause tenderness and pain. If infection is not spotted early on nor taken care of, then a root canal may be necessary along the way to help preserve the remaining tooth.

What Are the Signs That a Root Canal is needed?

Though at times, symptoms may not be present, signs of needing a root canal include:

  • Discoloration/ darkening of a tooth
  • Swelling or tenderness in the gums surrounding the tooth
  • Formation of pimples on the surrounding gums
  • Sensitivity or pain to hot or cold temperatures
  • Severe toothache when chewing or any form of pressure is applied

If you are currently experiencing any of the above, contact your dentist immediately for a dental exam.

root-canal-procedure

How Do I Prevent Needing a Root Canal?
Since a large portion of root canals at the dental office in Las Vegas are performed due to repeated dental care and tooth decay, maintaining proper oral hygiene is necessary for healthy teeth. Brushing your teeth twice daily, flossing before you brush, and visiting your dentist on a regular basis for routine check ups will help to prevent infection or tooth decay from occurring. If you play sports, wearing a mouth guard can help prevent chips, cracks, and oral trauma from occurring.

Root canals are a treatment of choice. Preserving your natural teeth is always the better solution and the least cost. Prevention is easy when proper oral care is maintained daily by brushing and flossing. If you start to notice any signs of damage, pain, or swelling, always contact your dentist for a dental exam and additional dental advice.