Taking the pain out of Root Canal Treatment
If you’re reading this page because you need to have a root canal, we sympathize. Looking on the bright side, at least dentists have the option of a root canal treatment to save your tooth. Hopefully we can give you some information to put your mind at ease.
What is a root canal and why would it be needed?
During development as a child, your tooth grows around nerves and blood vessels that help form and grow the tooth. These nerves and blood vessels remain in our tooth a bit like a vestigial (unnecessary) organ like the appendix. For a number of reasons, such as previous trauma, bacterial infection, loss of blood supply to the tooth, or other reasons, the nerves may "act up" and become painful or infected. Pain or sensitivity is often the trigger to seek our help to relieve the pain. Root canal treatment gives the opportunity to save the tooth. Essentially, in doing a root canal treatment, all the diseased or infected tissues are cleaned from the tooth and it is sealed from the inside to prevent bacteria from entering the tooth canal space. The tooth is saved. We will recommend a filling or crown for the tooth, but at least that's better than missing a tooth!
Is it painful? How long does it take?
Interestingly, as soon as you tell someone that you need a root canal, the "war stories" of past root canal experiences come flooding out, as if it is a badge of honor to have the most horrific story. In reality, the vast majority of the discomfort occurs due to the diseased tooth prior to the dental treatment. The dentist and the root canal treatment offers relief from the pain.
The treatment may be done in one or two visits and can take between 45 min and 2 hours in total depending on the complexity of the tooth (molars usually have more roots).
If you do suspect that you have a problem with a tooth or know that you need a root canal do not hesitate. Call you Victoria, BC dentist for a consultation and let us help you.