If you have been suffering from a chronic toothache, your dentist may prescribe a type of oral surgery called a root canal. Some of the symptoms that indicate the need for this endodontic procedure include throbbing tooth pain, swelling of the gums around a tooth, presentation of pimple like bumps on the gums, foul-smelling liquid flowing from the gums and increased sensitivity to heat or cold.
If you are experiencing great discomfort, you may ask the dentist to simply extract the tooth. However, a dental extraction is not necessarily the best option. Here are two reasons that a root canal may be preferred:
A root canal allows you to keep your natural tooth. During a root canal procedure, the interior tissue of the tooth is removed. This tissue, which is called the pulp, includes the dental nerves and the blood supply of the tooth. Much of the discomfort felt before a root canal is due to an inflamed dental nerve. However, once the dental nerve is removed, the discomfort is alleviated.
After the pulp of the tooth is evacuated, the interior chambers of the tooth can be cleaned and disinfected. Then, the tooth can be filled and a dental crown can be placed to restore the appearance and functionality of the tooth.
The crown, which may be tooth-colored, covers the tooth to restore structural integrity and to protect it from an invasion of oral bacteria. Since the color and shape of the crown can be customized to match the other teeth in your mouth, a tooth that has undergone a root canal is difficult to distinguish from your other natural teeth.
Once your tooth is extracted, it can no longer serve as a placeholder for the teeth that lie next to it. The gap left by the extracted tooth will give adjacent teeth enough room to shift out of position. Once the shifting begins, other teeth can also begin to migrate. The resulting misalignment may require the use of braces or other orthodontic appliances to correct the problem.
However, a tooth that undergoes a root canal is able to remain in place and continues to prevent adjacent teeth from moving.
If you have a tooth that has been causing you problems, schedule an appointment with a dentist in your area, such as DSW Dental, to have the tooth assessed. If the dentist does recommend a root canal, consider the benefits of the oral surgery procedure.