Root Canals

Russell B. Fox, DMD

General and Cosmetic Dentists located in Middleboro, MA

If you have a tooth that’s infected or inflamed on the inside, you likely have a hard time eating, speaking, and generally being comfortable because of it. Rather than letting your tooth infection cost you the whole tooth, the team at Fox Dental in Middleboro, Massachusetts, performs safe and effective root canals to remove the inside without damaging the outer structure. To find out if you need a root canal or learn more about the procedure, call the office or book your appointment online today.

Root Canals Q & A

What are root canals?

Root canals are common dental procedures involving the removal of the soft inner pulp from a damaged or infected tooth. 

The purpose is to remove bacteria from the orifice or prevent bacteria from entering it in the first place due to external damage to the tooth. 

The tooth can continue to survive without its pulp after it’s finished growing because the surrounding tissues nourish it.

During a root canal procedure, your dentist numbs the gum around the affected tooth to prepare you for a painless treatment. Then they make a tiny hole in the top of your tooth to remove the pulp. 

After carefully removing the bulk of the pulp, they make sure that the narrow canals are completely clear of pulp, too. 

They’ll coat the inside of your tooth with antibiotics to remove any remaining bacteria before filling and sealing the tooth with a rubber-like material.

When do I need a root canal?

Root canals are necessary when the inside of a tooth becomes infected or inflamed. This can occur due to untreated decay, a deep crack or chip, or extensive dental work. 

There are a few symptoms to look out for that could indicate your need for a root canal. If the pulp inside your tooth is inflamed or infected, you might notice:

  • Pain in your tooth
  • Temperature sensitivity
  • Inflamed gums around the tooth
  • A sensation of heat near the tooth

To be sure that a root canal is necessary to save your tooth, the team at Fox Dental takes a digital X-ray image of your mouth to view the inner contents of the affected tooth. 

If your symptoms are accompanied by a fever or breathing problems, you should seek emergency care as soon as possible.

Are root canal procedures painful?

One common misconception about root canal procedures is that they’re horribly painful and hard to tolerate. In reality, the anesthesia that your dentist gives you ensures that your root canal is relatively comfortable. 

Your mouth may feel sore for several days following your appointment, but this discomfort is minimal compared to the pain of an untreated tooth infection.

If one or more of your teeth are particularly sensitive or painful, don’t hesitate to call Fox Dental or book an appointment online to find out if you need a root canal.