September 6, 2018

Dental infections can be quite painful and should be treated right away with root canals. Dental infections occur deep in the pulp of the tooth (also known as the root), where the tooth’s nerves, blood vessels and connective tissue are located. Here’s what you need to know about dental infections and how they are treated.

How Dental Infections Occur

The outside of the tooth (the crown) is designed to protect the sensitive pulp inside from bacteria that cause infections. But if the tooth becomes cracked, chipped or develops a cavity, bacteria can enter and spread down to the root. Here are a few of the most common symptoms of a dental infection:

  • Severe, throbbing toothache that can radiate to the neck, jawbone or ear
  • Swelling in the cheek or face
  • Fever
  • Sudden sensitivity to temperature extremes (hot and cold)
  • Swollen, sensitive lymph nodes in the neck or under the jaw
  • Sensitivity to pressure, especially from chewing
  • Unexplained foul taste in the mouth and unexplained bad breath

If you have any of these signs of a dental infection, schedule an appointment with your dentist in Richmond, VA, right away. A root canal is required to treat a tooth abscess and clean bacteria out of the area.

root canal

How A Root Canal Is Performed

Root canals are performed only after anesthetic is applied to the area to numb it and relieve discomfort. Then, the infected pulp inside the tooth is removed and the roots of the tooth are cleaned out and disinfected. Finally, the empty roots are filled with a sterile, rubber-like material and sealed off so no further bacteria can penetrate the area. The crown of the tooth is then restored, or a porcelain crown is placed on top to restore dental function and appearance.

Schedule Your Appointment

You don’t have to live with the pain of a dental infection, and you shouldn’t try. If you have any symptoms of inflamed pulp, call your dentist in Richmond, VA, right away. You can schedule a root canal with Drs. Robert or Grant Steadman by calling Steadman Family Dentistry during business hours.



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