While feeling pain is never pleasant, it does serve a purpose. Pain tells us when something is wrong and where the problem is. Also when it goes away, we can be reasonably sure the issue is resolved. However, things can get complicated when those systems suffer a disconnect. This is the case with endodontically treated teeth, which oftentimes do not feel pain.
Well, that’s not entirely true. If a tooth splits, or bacteria gains access to the underlying bone, then you will feel pain in your tooth even if it has been endodontically treated. Outside of extreme circumstances, the story is a little different. When teeth undergo root canal therapy, the inner living tissues and nerves are replaced with a filling. Lacking nerves, the tooth loses its power to let us know when bacteria, decay, and other forms of injury occur. Without pain, it’s difficult to signal your brain that your tooth needs medical help. Over long periods of time, ignoring a tooth that requires care can lead to tooth and bone loss, as well as extensive treatment.
Our priority is always to save your natural tooth, however, if due to additional damage we find the tooth is unsalvageable then our next best strategy may be an extraction and tooth replacement.
Long-Term Aftercare for Root Canal
As long as you’re caring for it properly, visiting your dentist regularly, and see no other signs indicating damage – no! Look for swelling, redness of the gums, or anything that looks out of the ordinary. The most important point of consideration is that, outside of physical injury, extreme damage doesn’t occur in an instant. If you do see any of these symptoms, or have been seeing them for long periods of time, we may need to discuss alternative plans for the failed treatment.
Proper care greatly minimizes the opportunity for bacteria to cause additional damage, and it protects the health of your smile. We love making our patients smile, and we are always happy to restore their confidence by way of a dental implant or other replacement option. However, before turning to a replacement option, we want to ensure our patients receive the necessary information to keep their natural smile brightly intact. If you have any concerns about the health of your smile, call us! We are always here to help.