Why Are Root Canals Necessary?
Your tooth is composed of different layers. You’re most familiar with the hard outer layer that forms the outer surface of the tooth, but there’s an inner, pulpy layer as well. When this deep, pulpy layer becomes badly infected, it can affect the structural integrity of the tooth. Left untreated, the tooth can eventually fall out or break off, causing significant pain and requiring surgery to remove it. A root canal removes the pulpy interior to relieve pain and help preserve the tooth.
Can’t I Just Have The Tooth Pulled?
You can, but in most cases, leaving the natural tooth in place is preferable to having it extracted. If you have your tooth pulled, you’ll need to have the tooth replaced in some way to avoid neighboring teeth from leaning into the gap, which can cause their own roots to loosen, resulting in eventual loss of those teeth. Plus, a missing tooth can cause bite misalignment as well as problems like grinding or clenching that can cause headaches, jaw pain and even TMD (tempomandibular joint disorder). And while you can replace a missing tooth with a denture or bridge, caring for a natural tooth is almost always easier.
Will I have a lot of pain afterward?
Thanks to advances in techniques, most patients report only minor discomfort afterward, which can be managed with over-the-counter medications. If your pain is considerable, Dr. Marvizi may be able to prescribe a stronger painkiller for the period right after the procedure while any inflammation resolves.
Will I need to have a crown?
Yes, once the tooth’s pulpy interior is removed, most of what is left is the hard shell. That means the tooth is weaker, and it also often becomes very discolored. A crown helps maintain the tooth’s strength and also hides any discoloration that may occur.
To find out more about our Root Canal services or the other dentistry services we provide, please call our Los Angeles dental office at 323.931.3881.