Can Root Canals Severely Affect Your Health? How Safe Is Root Canal Treatment?


Root canal or endodontic therapy can help in restoring a badly infected, decayed tooth. It has become painless and straightforward due to the advancements in dental technologies. The patient needs to visit the dental office once or twice to complete the entire procedure.

As a part of the procedure, the dentist removes dead tissues (damaged pulp, nerve) and bacteria from inside the tooth. The area is cleaned correctly to ensure there are no bacteria left behind. Then, the space is filled with a rubber-like material (gutta-percha) before closing the opening with cement.

The nerve’s function is sensory; it helps in sensing cold or hot temperatures. Thus, its removal does not impact the tooth’s functioning. Replacing the same with filling material increases the affected tooth structure’s life. Root canal treatment is very safe for any patient as it saves the tooth and allows for normal functioning.

When Is It Recommended?

Symptoms like tenderness, swelling, or spontaneous tooth pain should never be ignored as they might be an indication of the decay reaching the nerve.

In case the patient experiences severe tooth pain throughout the day, primarily, while eating, the dental care expert examines the affected tooth and recommends x-rays. If the x-ray report indicates nerve/root damage, the dentist recommends endodontic therapy.

If the tooth is significantly damaged, the dental care expert might recommend the patient to either extract the tooth or opt for a dental implant.

Such infected teeth need urgent treatment. Ignoring the infection and symptoms at such a level can result in a tooth abscess.

Are There Any Alternatives For This Treatment?

Placing calcium hydroxide above the affected part of the tooth might help if the damage is very little. But in case of severe nerve damage root canal, extraction or dental implants are the three recommended options.

Extracting the decayed tooth is often considered the last option. It results in the loss of jaw support and affects the person’s chewing capacity as well. Removing the tooth also creates space, and due to this, teeth from both sides slowly start shifting, changing their position. The misalignment further causes problems like TMJ pain. Most importantly, teeth extraction also triggers facial aging.

A dental implant is often tagged as an expensive alternative to endodontic therapy. The treatment involves replacing the natural root and tooth surface with titanium screw root and porcelain or metal crown. Nothing from the natural tooth remains in the new structure.

Saving a tooth is always a better option than removing a tooth and replacing it with an implant.

A root canal can last for more than a decade if the patient maintains proper oral hygiene. The same goes for dental implants.

What Are The Misconceptions Surrounding Endodontic Therapy?

Estimates indicate that more than fifteen million root canals are performed every year in the United States.

Perhaps, the most discussed misconception about the treatment is regarding the level of pain and side effects. Old-timers often believe it is better to get the tooth removed instead of endodontic therapy. The misconception is far from reality as the use of local anesthesia, lasers, and advanced tools make it a painless procedure. Root canal eradicates the cause of pain, and saves and restores the healthy natural parts of the tooth. It is far better than losing the tooth and does not cause any adverse effects on the patient’s health.

It does involve the use of a small drill to create an opening in the center of the tooth for cleaning the infected pulp and applying the medication. However, it does not cause much pain or damage to the nearby teeth. More than 90 percent of the surgeries are successful.

At times, the patient’s tooth is damaged, but he or she does not experience any pain. The absence of pain does not mean there is no infection and the need for endodontic therapy. The x-ray plays a crucial role in showing the extent of the damage in the absence of pain.

People often question dentists about the need for retreatment. The need for retreatment arises only in case of missed canals or defective restoration. The best solution for this problem is to opt for one of the most experienced Roswell Dentists.

What Are The Precautions To Be Taken?

There is no alternative to oral hygiene even after opting for a root canal. But the operated tooth can last for a lifetime without damage if proper care is taken.

The patient may experience a bit of sensitiveness in the operated tooth and surrounding parts for a few hours after the procedure. Such experience is entirely rational, and the dentist might recommend over-the-counter pain medications for relief.

Patients suffering from heart diseases and diabetes may require additional tests to be conducted before undergoing endodontic therapy. If you are looking for a General Dentistry Roswell GA to discuss your dental issues, you should book an appointment with TruCare Dentistry. Dr. Toral has performed several successful root canal procedures.