Root Canal Procedure: What You Must Know

Root canals are one of the most common dental procedures performed in modern dentistry. They are also one of the most dreaded and least understood. This article will discuss what a root canal in San Antonio is, its purpose, and why it’s nothing to fear.

Woman in pain before a root canal San Antonio

Understanding a Root Canal Procedure

Root Canal Versus Root Canal Procedure

Each tooth has a root canal that contains the pulp, nerves, and blood vessels. This root connects the tooth to the bone and gums. It nourishes the tooth and provides it with a strong foundation.

A root canal procedure is needed when the root is inflamed or infected. It involves:

  • Removing the infected pulp

  • Cleaning the canals

  • Filling them with a particular material to prevent future infections

Reasons Why a Root Canal Gets Infected

The most common causes of a root canal infection are

  • A cracked or chipped tooth that is exposed to the elements

  • A cracked or chipped tooth that is not adequately cared for after a filling

  • A crown or bridge that is too short, resulting in exposure of the tooth

  • Eating or chewing hard food and not flossing

  • Eating foods that damage your teeth

  • Not providing regular dental care

  • A bacterial infection to the tooth that has spread to the root

  • A tooth that has been abscessed and has not been treated

  • A tooth that has been fractured and has not been appropriately repaired

How Long Does a Root Canal Procedure Take?

A root canal procedure takes about two hours or less. The dentist removes the infected tooth, cleans the canals, and fills them with a unique material called gutta-percha, a type of plastic. Gutta-percha is used to prevent infection and protect the tooth from future decay.

There are no stitches or sutures required. Your gums may be numb while the procedure is taking place. After the process, the dentist may apply a cold compress to help relieve any discomfort. You may have slight discomfort when swallowing for a few days. You may also experience mouth sores or swelling.

The dentist will provide you with instructions on how to take care of your mouth and recommend that you take antibiotics to prevent bacterial infection.

How Painful is a Root Canal Procedure?

A root canal procedure is not painful. However, you may feel discomfort after the dentist removes the tooth and fills it with gutta-percha. Your dentist may numb the area with a local anesthetic or give you a sedative to help you relax.

While some patients report pain during the procedure, it is crucial to note that it is not because of the root canal treatment itself but the infected tooth. It is because the infection is a painful condition. On the flip side, many patients who experienced pain before the procedure are happy with their comfort after the treatment.

Closeup of a man getting a root canal in San Antonio

Need a Dentist to Treat Your Root Canal in San Antonio?

A root canal procedure is the best step toward saving a tooth from total decay. While a tooth extraction can be an option, doing this will alter the function of your mouth and require more expensive procedures for fixing.

At Leon Springs Dental Center, we operate with integrity and pledge to be at the forefront of saving teeth and alleviating our patients' oral health. Visit our contact page today to schedule your appointment.

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