Root canal treatment, despite its reputation, is a vital procedure that can save a severely damaged or infected tooth. However, many patients may put off or avoid treatment due to fear, misconceptions, or belief that the problem will disappear.
Unfortunately, delaying a root canal can have serious consequences for your oral health and well-being. Read on to learn more about how a delayed root canal can hurt more than just your teeth.
1. Persistent Pain and Discomfort
One of the most obvious reasons patients need root canal treatment is to alleviate severe tooth pain caused by infection. This pain is generally a result of damage to the tooth’s pulp where all the tooth’s nerve endings are. Ignoring or delaying treatment can lead to persistent and worsening pain, making it difficult to eat, sleep, or enjoy normal activities.
2. Spread of Infection
The infected pulp inside the tooth can carry harmful bacteria that can spread beyond the tooth root and into the gums and jawbone. This leads to a dental abscess or, even more serious, systemic infection. Delaying a root canal allows this to progress, increasing the risk of complications and requiring more aggressive treatment to resolve.
3. Damage to Adjacent Teeth
Skipping a root canal on an infected tooth can affect neighboring teeth as well. As the bacteria causing dental issues spreads, it begins to slowly decay adjacent teeth. This can lead to the need for multiple root canals, further complicating your dental health and treatment options.
4. Tooth Loss
Without quick intervention, infected teeth can be compromised all the way through. This weakens the tooth’s structural integrity, causing it to loosen. Eventually, as the gum tissues around the affected tooth weaken, the tooth may simply fall out. Root canal treatment is designed to avert this by removing the infected pulp and sealing the root canals. This preserves the tooth’s function and prevents extraction.
5. Increased Treatment Costs
Delaying a root canal may result in the need for more extensive and costly dental procedures in the future. Advanced infection or tooth loss may require treatments such as dental implants, and bridges. This vastly increases the complexity and expense of treatment.
So, as you can see, postponing a root canal can have serious consequences for your oral health, your body, and your wallet. This is why it’s so important to see a dentist if you’re experiencing symptoms of a tooth infection or damage. Don’t wait to seek professional dental care. Your dentist is a kind and compassionate person who just wants to help. So, let them. Call your dentist to schedule a root canal as soon as possible!
About the Author
If you’re nervous about a root canal you need, Dr. Deborah Bishop is here to help. She’s a skilled and empathetic dental specialist who understands how some patients become apprehensive at the dentist. To combat this, she uses only ultramodern dental technology and techniques to ensure a relaxing and pain-free visit every time. Call (256) 882-5161 to schedule a root canal consultation at Deborah S. Bishop, DMD, PC Compassionate Endodontics, or visit the website to book online.