5 Signs You Need an Emergency Root Canal

Emergency root canal

Are you experiencing intense tooth pain? This may be a sign you need an emergency root canal. A root canal treatment is performed on a severely infected tooth. It’s often the best chance of saving the tooth before extraction is required. But don’t worry, root canal treatments are not as scary as you might think. With modern dentistry, they are said to be no more uncomfortable than having a filling. 

At Dental on York, we’re experts in emergency dental care and have successfully treated countless root canal infections. In this article, we discuss five signs and symptoms that mean you might need an emergency root canal. 

Do I need an emergency root canal? 

Needing an emergency root canal is usually the result of either a damaged tooth or untreated tooth decay. Tooth decay often begins as just a little hole, but when it’s left untreated, the decay slowly worsens. Eventually, it can reach the innermost layer of your tooth, the pulp. The pulp is made up of soft tissues and nerve endings. When it’s exposed, the pulp becomes vulnerable to infection. By this stage, generally, your only chance of saving the tooth is with a root canal treatment. Here are five signs to watch out for:

Unbearable pain

Dental pain can indicate a variety of problems including infection. It often begins as a light throbbing that comes and goes. As the infection spreads the pain can become unbearable. Consistent pain like this can indicate the infection has reached the pulp. If you are experiencing this kind of pain, you should contact an emergency dentist immediately.  

A severely damaged tooth

If your tooth is severely damaged as a result of an accident or injury it may require an emergency root canal. The damage can leave the pulp exposed and at risk of dying. If this is the case, you may experience a lot of pain and discomfort. An emergency root canal can fix this. Your dentist may then use a crown to restore the tooth’s appearance. 

Tooth discolouration

A discoloured tooth may be a sign that the nerves in your tooth are damaged. Your tooth may appear brown, grey and then black. This is because the nerves in your tooth are slowly dying. Your tooth may also feel quite sensitive and/or painful. An emergency root canal is usually required to save the tooth from eventually falling out.

A dental abscess

When your tooth becomes badly infected an abscess can form at the base of your gum. Dental abscesses often look like small pimples and may have pus leaking out. This is a clear sign that an emergency root canal may be needed. Left untreated, the infection can spread to your jaw, bone and bloodstream. 

Prolonged sensitivity

Having sensitive teeth can be normal, especially when we expose our teeth to extreme temperatures. However, if you notice your teeth feeling sensitive all the time, it can be a sign of a deeper issue. Damage, decay and infection can all make your teeth feel extra sensitive because your nerves are exposed. If you noticed this, it may mean you need an emergency root canal procedure. 

What can I do to prevent a root canal treatment?

Luckily, emergency root canals are preventable. With good oral care habits, your teeth can remain healthy. Here are some easy tips and tricks to follow:

  • Brush your teeth twice a day for two minutes
  • Floss every day
  • Use a fluoride-based toothpaste
  • Schedule regular dental check-ups (every six to nine months)
  • Eat a healthy diet (limit your sugar intake)

How Dental on York can help

Here at Dental on York, we have a team of excellent emergency dentists equipped with the best dental skills, tools and technology to treat your teeth. Your comfort and health are our top priorities. Don’t suffer in pain, give us a call.

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