About 90% of people between the ages of 20 and 64 in the United States have some decay in their teeth, which explains why more than 15 million root canal procedures are performed each year in the US.
Not only can a root canal procedure stop decay in its tracks and save your tooth, it can also relieve the hard-to-ignore symptoms of a problem in your root canal, starting with the pain.
At Hillsdale Dental Care, our team, including Dr. Roge Jacob and Dr. Magdalena Azzarelli, performs our fair share of quick-and-easy root canal procedures.
Here, we explore some of the signs that there may be a problem in your root canal, which can benefit from early, and tooth-reserving, action.
Let’s start with a symptom that really gets your attention — pain. Your root canals are inside the roots of your teeth, beneath the enamel and dentin. These canals house pulp, a soft tissue that contains blood vessels, nerves, and connective tissues.
When bacteria make their way inside a root canal, they can create an infection in your pulp. As we discussed, this pulp contains nerves, so the infection can lead to considerable pain in your tooth.
This pain can be a dull ache or a throbbing nuisance that hijacks your well-being.
2. Heightened sensitivity
Another telltale sign of a problem in your tooth is heightened sensitivity to hot and cold. Some people have extra-sensitive teeth that respond more to extreme temperatures, but the reaction is usually swift and goes away almost immediately. If there’s an infection inside your tooth, the reaction can linger, and it might feel like a throbbing sensation around the affected tooth.
3. Swollen gums
As your body fights off an infection in your tooth, a byproduct of this effort is pus. If the pus gets into your gums, you may have swelling in the soft tissues, as well as tenderness. You may also develop a pimple-like feature on your gums where pus leaks out, which can lead to some very bad breath.
4. Discoloration in your tooth
An infected tooth may appear darker than the rest of your teeth. The color changes because the infection in your root canal is compromising the blood supply to the tooth.
5. Loosening in your tooth
An infected tooth might become loose. This occurs because the tooth’s supporting tissues are affected by the infection.
Treating your root canal infection
If you have any of the symptoms we describe above, a quick trip to our office delivers the answers you need. After reviewing your symptoms, examining your teeth, and taking X-rays, we can figure out what’s going on inside your mouth.
If we find an infection in your root canal, the good news is that we can treat the problem right away to save your tooth and relieve your symptoms.
To schedule your appointment today, please contact our office in San Jose, California.