5 Signs You Might Need a Root Canal

toothache

“I hope I need a root canal”, said no dental patient ever. 

It’s true, a root canal is one of those procedures that nobody ever wants to have. 

The good news is, root canals are very common and not as scary as they sound. Millions of root canals are performed every year. 

“Decades ago, root canal treatments often were painful. With dental advances and local anesthetics, most people have little if any pain with a root canal. In fact, it’s probably more painful living with a decayed tooth,” says Mayo Clinic

In fact, endodontic therapy has about a 90% success rate for most patients and can actually help you get rid of prolonged discomfort and pain in your teeth. 

How do you know if you need a root canal? Here are some symptoms that may indicate you need a root canal. 

How to Know if You Need a Root Canal

1. Prolonged Toothache

While a toothache can be caused by other conditions, such as a cavity, persistent tooth pain may be an indicator that you need a root canal. 

You may even experience pain that feels like it’s going down into the jaw bone and traveling to other parts of the face. 

If your tooth hurts while eating or when any pressure is applied, it’s best not to ignore it. 

2. Temperature Sensitivity

Teeth that are sensitive to hot or cold temperatures are often a red flag signaling the nerve or blood vessel issues. 

Whether dull or sharp, if you experience pain that sticks around even when a warm or cool item is no longer touching your tooth, you may have an infected tooth in need of a root canal.

3. Discolored Tooth

Below the hard enamel of your teeth lays something called pulp. It’s where the soft tissue and blood vessels are. 

If you have a tooth that is starting to darken in appearance, it may indicate that your tooth pulp is dying from an infection. 

Of course, teeth may darken due to a variety of other causes, such as drinking coffee, so be aware that tooth discoloration does not always mean a root canal is in order.

4. Tooth Injury

If you’ve experienced any trauma to your mouth, such as taking a hit playing sports, cracking a tooth on a popcorn kernel, or accidentally chipping your tooth on your coffee mug, you may be at risk of infection. 

Chips and cracks, or really any injury to the teeth can cause nerve damage and inflammation which may lead to needing endodontic therapy.

5. Gum Tenderness

Swollen, sore gums or even pimple-like bumps on your gums surrounding an achy tooth may also reveal the need for a root canal. These symptoms are indicators of a potentially unhealthy tooth.

Root Canal Dentist in Hatboro, PA

Of course, the best way to know if you need a root canal is to go to the dentist for an exam. 

Here at WeSmile in Hatboro, our experienced team is here to help you learn what your options are. Should you need a root canal, we will do all we can to make sure the procedure is as painless as possible.

Endodontic treatment is a great way to salvage damaged teeth and help you retain your original smile. If your tooth cannot be saved, WeSmile also offers the industry’s best dental implants. Our goal is to help restore your smile and help free you of oral discomfort. 

Contact us to book an appointment. We provide each patient with customized, courteous care, and we offer multiple payment options, even for those without insurance.

Meet Our IMPLANT SPECIALIST:

Todd Singer, DDS

Todd Singer

Dr. Singer is a proven leader and expert in clinical excellence. He earned his DDS at the State University of New York at Stony Brook then completed his Periodontic Residency at the University of Maryland’s Dental School in Baltimore. He was a clinical instructor at the University of Maryland for many years and has now brought that same expertise to his position at the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Dental Medicine where he is currently an Assistant Dean. Whether it’s teaching future dentists or caring for patients at WeSmile, Dr. Singer is happiest when he’s in a dental setting.

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