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Root Canal FAQs

woman talking to her dentist in Lakeville about root canals

Contrary to what movies and TV shows would have you believe, root canals are nothing to fear. Thanks to modern dental technology, this procedure is fairly straightforward and it shouldn’t hurt any more than it does to get a cavity filling. Still, misinformation easily persists about root canal therapy, and your dentist in Lakeville is here to set the record straight. Below, we’ve answered many of the most frequently asked questions we get about root canals. Don’t be afraid to call us directly if you need additional clarification.

How Long Does It Take to Recover from a Root Canal?

Your recovery timeline will be influenced by the state of your oral and overall health, so it can vary. With that being said, most patients feel well enough to return to their normal activities the following day. You can expect some residual soreness and/or swelling for a few days afterward, but this should be temporary and manageable.

Why Do I Need a Root Canal If My Tooth Doesn’t Hurt?

Pain is a common sign that you need a root canal in Lakeville, but it’s definitely not the only one. It’s possible for decay or infection to damage the nerves inside of the tooth to the point where they cannot register pain anymore. At that point, the tooth wouldn’t hurt, but it could still be in danger of being irreparably damaged and needing extraction.

Our team doesn’t recommend root canals lightly; if we suggest getting one, it means your tooth could be at serious risk otherwise, even if it’s not currently in pain.

How Long Can I Put Off Getting a Root Canal?

We understand that you may be nervous to schedule a root canal, even if your tooth is currently hurting. After all, this procedure has a scary reputation. However, waiting too long can have severe consequences. Root canal therapy is the last option for saving a damaged or decayed tooth before it has to be removed entirely; not completing this treatment quickly enough could end up costing you your tooth. Then, you’d have to deal with having a gap in your grin, as well as the costs of replacing a missing tooth. The infection in your mouth might even spread to other areas of your body and cause all sorts of overall health problems.

For these reasons, it’s best to schedule your root canal promptly after we recommend it.

Can I Take Antibiotics Instead of Getting a Root Canal?

As simple as it would be to merely take antibiotic pills, they unfortunately don’t work on tooth infections. Oral antibiotics work by traveling through the bloodstream to target bacterial infection. However, the pulp of the tooth is inaccessible via the bloodstream, rendering these antibiotics useless. The only way to target the tooth infection directly is to perform a root canal.