Suffering an injury to a tooth, such as from a fall or while playing contact sports, can put you at increased risk for tooth loss, but that outcome is not inevitable. Root canal therapy can help to prevent oral bacteria from infiltrating the innermost sections of the tooth, where they can destroy the tooth from the inside out.
Tooth trauma can cause a crack in the tooth, giving oral bacteria easy access to the pulp. When infection develops in the pulp, the sensitive nerve endings are triggered, which can cause significant discomfort for the patient. Additionally, the infection can access the blood stream and spread elsewhere in the body.
To cut off this possibility from the beginning, your dentist can perform a root canal. This procedure involves removing the pulp material from the tooth’s root canal chamber, cleaning the empty chamber thoroughly and then sealing it using a rubber-like material to prevent future infections from setting in.
Unfortunately, root canal therapy has the reputation – undeserved, by the way – of being a painful procedure. That’s not the case, though. Most patients who undergo root canal therapy describe the discomfort as no more significant than that associated with having a cavity filled. Furthermore, because root canal therapy is intended to eliminate any infection that is present, patients actually get relief from discomfort following a root canal.
In order to have the best chance of saving your tooth after suffering some sort of facial trauma, you should consult with your dentist as quickly as possible so that you can get a root canal therapy promptly, when it will be most effective. Delaying this follow-up may put your tooth at greater risk for being lost.
Root canal therapy does leave your tooth at greater risk for breakage, so patients usually have a crown placed on the treated tooth to give it extra protection. Your provider can give you more information about this aspect of your treatment.
Have you experienced facial trauma that damaged a tooth or teeth? Root canal therapy can help you save the tooth, which is always preferable to having it extracted and replaced with a prosthetic. Call our office as soon as possible to schedule your evaluation!