Severe pain isn't the only sign that you may need a root canal. Although other signs and symptoms may be more subtle, ignoring them could lead to the loss of your tooth. Root canal therapy, one of the family dentistry services offered by Dr. Terry Linneman of Prairie Village Dental Care in Prairie Village, KS, treats inflammations and infections in tooth pulp.
How can I tell if I need a root canal?
You may notice one or more of these signs if there's a problem with your pulp:
- Some Degree of Pain: Pain from an inflamed or infected pulp can be severe, but it usually begins as milder pain that gradually gets worse. The pain may come and go or may be constant. It's important to visit your Prairie Village dentist if you notice tooth pain that lasts more than a day or two or that is intermittent. Pain is a very effective warning system that lets you know that there's something wrong with your body. If you ignore the signals, a minor oral health issue may eventually become a major problem.
- Pain That Intensifies Under Certain Conditions: If you need a root canal, your pain may worsen when you chew. Simply pressing on the tooth with your finger may also cause pain to flare up. Have you given up hot and cold foods and beverages because they're not worth the pain? Increased sensitivity to temperature extremes is another sign you may need a root canal.
- Red Gum: The gum around your painful tooth may be tender and look red and swollen. It's never a good idea to overlook changes in your gum, as they may also be a sign of gum disease.
- Changing Tooth Color: Darkening of your tooth enamel may occur if you have an inflammation or infection in some cases.
- Signs of a Dental Abscess: Suspect a bacterial infection called an abscess if your hurts, and you have a fever, facial swelling, a small bump on the gum near your tooth, pus around the tooth or swollen lymph nodes. Abscesses are considered dental emergencies and require antibiotic treatment and root canal therapy.
Root canal therapy can help protect your tooth! If you're concerned about any of these symptoms or are in need of family dentistry services, call Dr. Linneman of Prairie Village Dental Care in Prairie Village, KS, at (913) 649-7500 to schedule an appointment.