Root Canal Therapy
A root canal therapy, or better known just as a "root canal," is a procedure that is needed in cases of severe dental cavities or damage to the tooth's nerve and blood supply systems. If a cavity is not treated early enough, the bacteria causing the cavity will continue to spread toward the center of the tooth where the nerve and the blood supply of the tooth are housed. As the cavity gets closer to the center, most patients will experience some degree of pain (although not having any symptoms is also possible). The pain can be anywhere from mild temporary discomfort to a more prolonged sensation of pain (dull and achy) especially after cold or hot food consumption. It can also be very severe where the pain comes seemingly out of the blue and is often described as a pounding sharp sensation that keeps you up at night.
Although it sounds scary, root canals need not be painful. Once we get the tooth nice and numb, it shouldn't feel any different from any other dental appointments. Sometimes with a severely infected tooth, additional numbing techniques may be needed during the procedure to get you completely comfortable. Depending on the tooth, the root canal therapy may take two to three visits to complete.