According to the American Association of Endodontists, nearly 15 million root canals are performed each year, making it one of the more common dental procedures.
If you visit your dentist for routine check-ups (and you should), they’ll do a thorough examination to identify any underlying issues or cause for concern. But what happens when you experience pain or sensitivity between visits?
Mild to extreme discomfort are common root canal symptoms. Knowing what signs to look for means you can act fast, schedule an appointment, and get the help you need before it becomes worse.
Read on to uncover three major root canal symptoms that are red flags it’s time to visit your dentist.
1. Pain and Swelling
These are the two most common signs of any underlying dental issue. While mouth pain can range from mild to severe, if you’re suffering from a root canal symptom, the pain is worse when chewing and biting.
Constant pain or pain that feels like it’s in your bones or jaw are also common signs you may need a root canal. Bone pain may also be a sign of an abscessed tooth that needs immediate treatment.
Swelling can also occur on the gums or cheek and both are signs of a major issue. Take note of where the discomfort or tenderness is coming from.
You may notice your cheek puffing out near the problem tooth as well. Apply ice or a cold compress to the area for 10-15 minutes throughout the day or until you can receive medical attention.
Most people don’t attribute tooth discoloration with an underlying problem, but this is a common root canal symptom — and one that teeth whitening won’t fix.
Root canals treat the pulp (or inside) of the tooth when it becomes infected or inflamed. This is often caused by decay, cracked or chipped teeth, or having several dental procedures in the same area.
Over time, any of these dental issues can cause graying or darkening of the tooth’s surface. If you notice discoloration, even without pain, you should see your dentist for an evaluation.
3. Sensitivity to Hot or Cold
One in eight adults suffers from sensitive teeth. The causes can vary but most teeth sensitivity is attributed to worn or thin tooth enamel. Enamel is the outermost covering of your tooth that protects the nerves.
When these nerves are exposed, you’ll experience sharp, sudden pain when eating or drinking items that are either extremely hot or cold.
If this pain lingers even after you’re done eating or drinking, it could be a sign that you need a root canal.
Don’t Ignore These Root Canal Symptoms
When you notice any of these root canal symptoms, it’s important to act fast. Dental complications can be serious and worsen quickly if gone untreated.
Take note of how you’re feeling and if the pain, swelling, or other symptoms are getting worse.
Contact us today to learn more about the services we offer and how we can help you achieve a beautiful, healthy smile.