The words root canal strikes fear in the heart of most of our patients. The first reason is what they perceive as the pain and the other is the cost. Though root canals are not a painless procedure they aren't as painful as they were in the good old days.
Yes, they cost more than a filling, but let's face it if you came in for semi-annual cleanings, we probably could have caught the problem before a root canal was necessary. That being said, how do you know if you may need one?
What Are the Symptoms?
Your first and most obvious sign will be a pain. This is not a pain that comes and goes or only happens when you eat or drink something that is too hot or too cold. This is a constant, persistent, nagging pain that simply will not go away.
If your tooth is only sensitive when you eat or drink hot or cold things then you may or may not need a root canal. The pain may begin as a dull aching pain but then increase to sharp, stabbing pain. Obviously, your problem is getting worse. You want to come in when it is still just a dull pain. You may then be able to avoid a root canal.
If your gums are red or swollen you may have an infected tooth or you may have gum disease. Either way, you have to see us because you can't fix either of these conditions yourself. If your tooth is infected due to extreme decay you will probably need a root canal.
These are some of the symptoms you may experience that could require a root canal. If you have any of these symptoms, call us and make an appointment.