4 Signs You May Need a Root Canal, Plus: FAQ

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What happens when a toothache quickly goes from bad to worse? Sometimes gargling warm salt water just won’t do the trick and it may be time to see your dentist. It’s possible that you may have a severely damaged or infected tooth. If you’re experiencing any of the following symptoms you may need a root canal.

  1. Tooth is sensitive to touch: Heightened sensitivity in tooth when touched with either tongue or finger may indicate the need for a root canal.
  2. Tooth sensitive to hot and cold temperatures: If you experience sensitivity lasting longer than 20 seconds when consuming hot or cold food and drink, this may indicate the need for a root canal. This is especially true for hot food or drink.
  3. Bad taste in the mouth: if a bad taste in your mouth persists after brushing, flossing and rinsing your mouth, this may be an indication that an infection has started and a root canal is necessary.
  4. Swelling: Swelling may occur with an infection although it is not always present. A boil may form on the gum above the tooth as a way to relieve pressure from the infection.

Your tooth can become extremely sensitive to temperature, pressure and chewing when the cavity and tooth decay is deep within your tooth. It’s also possible that the pulp of your tooth is infected or even exposed, increasing sensitivity. Your tooth chamber contains tiny nerves and blood vessels that may start to die if they become infected. This infection can cause pain, swelling and a bad taste in your mouth.

You should book an appointment to see Dr. Pong if you think you have an infected tooth or think you may need a root canal. The process is simple; he will assess your symptoms, do an intra-oral exam and take an X-Ray to determine if your tooth needs a root canal.

In most cases, your tooth can be treated right in our Oakville dental office in just one appointment. A relatively painless root canal procedure will allow you to keep your natural tooth rather than having to pull it out. you may need antibiotics and an anti-inflammatory medication, depending on the severity of the pain and the infection.

Frequently Asked Questions

  •  Q. I’ve heard that placing an aspirin on a sore tooth will help relieve the pain, is this true?
    • A. No, do not place an aspirin on your gum tissues. Aspirin is an acid and will cause you more harm than it will do good. If you’re experiencing pain you should come to the office for an assessment.
  •  Q. Are root canals painful?
    • A. No, root canals are not painful. Root canals will relieve you of any pain you’re experiencing.
  •  Q. I don’t want to get a root canal, do I have another option?
    • A. Yes, there’s another option! If you don’t want to receive a root canal we can simply remove the tooth.
  •  Q. Does my dental insurance cover root canals?
    • A. Most insurance companies cover root canals. We will be happy to discuss root canal price and coverage with you.
  •  Q. How can I avoid a root canal?
    • A. Floss and brush your teeth daily and make sure to keep your regular hygiene appointments with Dr. Pong.

Contact our Oakville dental office if you have any other questions or concerns. We are always happy to help!

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