What are the signs that I might need a root canal?

Root canals are followed by horror stories, after all it’s not a good dental story unless it’s full of horror… well so they say.

What are the signs that point towards you needing root canal treatment?

  1. Tooth pain! Im talking severe, sharp, stabbing tooth pain. You can feel this in your tooth and on the surrounding gum line. This is a result of damage to the nerve. The pain can become more intense when pressure is applied.
  2. Sensitivity! We can all get a bit of a shock when we are eating ice cream ( the people who bite it…what’s that all about?!) If you have an infection the sensitivity is more focused on one tooth. Pay attention to the area you get this and if it is in the same area all the time call your dentist.
  3. Swollen gums! Now, there are a few things that can cause swollen gums. For example, Gingivitis, food trapping, prodding yourself with a tepe brush maybe. If you notice your gum is swollen at the base of one tooth in particular there may be an infection present. Once you notice it, keep an eye out and if it is still present in a week, book in to have it checked.
  4. Sores on your gum! Some people experience canker sores on their gums, this is a result of acidic food or hot drinks. They will go away on their own. However, the bacteria that accompany an infection can cause sores on your gums, kind of like a pimple under the surface of your gum line. They look similar to pimples on your face, a nice white bump with the bacteria in…nice. They will keep recurring in the same area and you will notice pain when they appear.
  5. Tooth discolouration! This can be caused by a few things, poor oral hygiene, staining from tea, coffee, wine and cigarettes etc. However, this can also be the result of nerve damage. This happens when the pulp of the tooth becomes discoloured due to the infection in the nerve. Blood can enter the tooth and stain the pulp.
  6. Prolonged tooth decay! Once you have a cavity, no matter how small, you can’t get rid of it on your own. You just cant so save yourself the disappointment of trying to brush it away. If the cavity goes untreated for too long it will spread to the root and infect the nerve of the tooth.

It is important for your oral health to attend regular dental appointments. Sometimes toothache is unavoidable but most of the time we can help prevent anything major happening. Yes yes, we know you don’t like coming to see us but wouldn’t you rather have a nice quick check up appointment rather than spending an hour or so in the chair having a root canal?

Don’t worry though. Root canal treatment isn’t as bad as you think it is.

Check out the blog on our website for more information on root canal treatment.