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How to Avoid a Root Canal

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A young woman in the mirror is smiling and holding a toothbrush cleaning her teeth.

Root canal treatment is a commonly performed dental procedure that can help to fill a tooth whose pulp has become infected or inflamed due to bacteria. It can be a necessary process to save and preserve a tooth. 

Taking proper care of your oral health is one of the best ways to avoid a root canal and maintain healthy teeth and gums. Regular brushing, flossing, and other healthy lifestyle changes can help to reduce the chance of needing root canal therapy. 

At Symmetry Dental, our experienced team has years of experience with root canal treatments. Please read our full blog and book an appointment today to learn more about the treatment options available.

Tips to Prevent Root Canals 

If you have a sweet tooth and like sugary foods or drinks, you may already have some experience with root canals. Here are a few tips to help prevent root canals:

Practice Good Oral Hygiene 

Brushing and flossing regularly and maintaining good oral hygiene is a must not only for your oral health but also helping to prevent root canals. It’s recommended that you brush your teeth twice per day and floss daily. 

Get More Fluoride 

Fluoride is a natural mineral that can help to strengthen the enamel of our teeth, which can be great in preventing cavities and tooth decay. Fluoride is often in our drinking water but can also be delivered via special kinds of toothpaste, mouthwashes, or supplements.

Book Regular Cleanings 

It is important to frequently visit your dentist for regular cleanings that can help to remove plaque buildup in those hard-to-reach places. Your dentist can also check for any signs of decay or problems with your oral health. 

Have Cavities Filled

If left untreated, cavities may continue to spread and cause more damage to your teeth, which could lead to a root canal. Please book an appointment with your dentist to have one filled.  

Wear Mouth Guards

A sports-related accident can result in a fractured tooth and exposed nerves, likely leading to a root canal. A mouth guard can help protect your teeth from these incidents. 

Avoid Hard & Sticky Foods 

Similar to sporting incidents, eating extremely hard or sticky foods can cause chips or cracks in your teeth, allowing room for bacteria to spread. 

A close-up of a woman with her left hand holding sugar cubes in her palm and thumbs down on her right hand.
Eating too many sugary or acidic foods can contribute to the breakdown of your enamel, which leads to cavities and tooth decay.

Avoid Sugary or Acidic Foods & Drinks 

Eating too many sugary or acidic foods can contribute to the breakdown of your enamel, which leads to cavities and tooth decay. Instead, try to eat healthier and rinse with water when eating or drinking harsher foods and drinks. 

What Is a Root Canal?

Root canal treatment is a form of endodontics therapy to help preserve and save a tooth. It involves the process of removing any infected tissue that is inside the crown and root of the tooth. After being cleared, the tooth is typically sealed with a permanent or temporary filling. 

Signs You Might Need a Root Canal 

Here are a few signs you might encounter if you need a root canal:

  • You experience lots of discomfort when chewing or biting 
  • You have a chipped or cracked tooth 
  • You have a lingering sensitivity to anything cold or hot 
  • Your gums are swollen
  • Your gums are darkening or showing signs of deep decay 
  • Bad breath 

If you are experiencing any of these signs or symptoms, it is important to book an appointment with your oral care specialist and have them examine your teeth and gums.

How Does Root Canal Treatment Work?

Root canal therapy is a common procedure and can be broken down into 6 steps. Here is how the root canal process might look:

  1. Your dentist will typically give you anesthesia to freeze your mouth and the tooth .
  2. Your dentist may place a rubber dam on your tooth to prevent bacteria in your saliva during treatment from reaching other places in your mouth.
  3. Your dentist will likely create an opening in your tooth to reach the root canal system and access the pulp.
  4. Your dentist will remove the pulp within the affected tooth.
  5. Your dentist will fill and seal the canal. 
  6. The tooth’s opening will generally be sealed with a temporary or permanent filling.

In most cases, root canal treatments are successful the first time, but sometimes a second root canal treatment might be needed, which involves taking out the filling, cleaning, and replacing it. 

The Benefits of Root Canal Treatment 

Having a root canal can significantly benefit your oral health. Here are a few reasons you might want to get yours done:

Relieve Discomfort 

Root canal treatments are done using anesthesia to help reduce any discomfort potentially experienced during the procedure. The treatment may also help relieve discomfort you were feeling prior to the root canal. 

Visually Appealing Results 

Crowns are typically used during a root canal and are designed to look and function like natural teeth. A root canal can help restore your tooth to its original appearance.

Let Us Help Keep Your Smile Healthy

Visit us at Symmetry Dental to learn more about how you can prevent root canals or receive the treatment needed to help you achieve good oral health.

Dr. Saleema Adatia, Calgary dentist

Written by Dr. Saleema Adatia

Dr. Saleema Adatia earned her Doctorate of Dental Medicine (DMD) from Tufts University in 2006. Since then, she’s been committed to serving her patients’ needs with the utmost passion. Dr. Adatia has owned and operated Symmetry Dental since 2013 and has integrated high-quality services with friendly care into the philosophy of the practice.

With a goal of providing the best patient care possible, Dr. Adatia ensures that her practice stays up to date with the latest dental technologies and techniques. Her personal passion for dentistry stems from a desire to create a positive impact on each patient’s quality of life. Whether that means treating people’s pain or restoring function and beauty to their smiles, the goal is always the same: to help make patient’s lives just a little bit better by working together in harmony.

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