A root canal is a common dental procedure. It is used to save a tooth that is infected or at risk for infection, allowing it to stay in place in your mouth.
If you have an upcoming root canal or you’ve recently had one, you may be wondering how long it will take you to detox afterward. Here’s what you need to know about root canal treatment and the after effects of the procedure.
What is a Root Canal?
A root canal, sometimes called root canal treatment or therapy, is a dental procedure named after the part of the tooth that it addresses. The root canal is the inner chamber of a tooth that contains the dental pulp, soft tissue made up of blood vessels and nerves. The dental pulp aids in tooth development and helps to sustain the tooth once it is fully mature.
However, a tooth can survive without the dental pulp. If bacteria enters the root canal through a cavity or a crack in the tooth, it can cause an infection that may result in loss of the tooth if not treated. Treatment involves removing the dental pulp, cleaning out the root canal to remove all traces of bacteria, and filling the tooth with a rubbery replacement material that fortifies the tooth and resists infection.
What is the Root Canal Process?
Root canal treatment can be performed with local anesthesia, but some patients opt for additional sedation to help them feel more relaxed. Once the anesthesia has time to take effect, the procedure will begin.
The dentist makes a small hole in the crown of the tooth in order to access the root canal. A special tool is used to extract all of the dental pulp. The tooth is then flushed out and disinfected thoroughly to remove any diseased tissue and bacteria. The composite filling material is applied through the same hole in the tooth. Then the tooth is covered with a crown to complete the procedure.
What Can I Expect After My Root Canal?
After a root canal, you will experience some residual facial numbness that will gradually wear off over the next few hours. Be careful not to chew on anything, and try to avoid biting your tongue or cheeks accidentally. You can eat after the numbness wears off, but stick to soft foods for the first 24 hours to avoid any discomfort.
If you had nitrous oxide (laughing gas), it would have worn off before you left the dentist’s office. If you took an oral sedative, it may take a few hours to wear off after your procedure. You’ll need to rest until you feel normal again, typically for the remainder of the day, and resume your normal activities the following day.
Can a Root Canal Make Me Sick?
It is an old myth that getting a root canal can make you sick. In the case of an infected tooth, the infection is carefully removed and the tooth is disinfected to prevent the infection from spreading. You are more at risk of becoming sick if you ignore an infected tooth, as an untreated infection can spread to the surrounding tissues, enter your bloodstream, and travel throughout your body.
Why Choose Glassman Dental Care?
If you’re in need of root canal treatment, the doctors and dental team at Glassman Dental Care have plenty of experience with this routine procedure. Through the use of technology, we provide comfortable and effective root canal therapy that can save infected or at-risk teeth.