Los Lunas

Does root canal treatment hurt? Learn the truth about dental pain.

If fear of future pain has you avoiding the dentist, we have news you’ll want to hear. The truth is that root canal treatment usually produces less pain than avoiding your dentist does. Many patients actually experience pain relief once the root canal procedure is completed.

At Los Lunas Smiles, our knowledgeable and friendly team, led by Dr. Yoon, understands dental anxiety and fear. That’s why we take every step possible to keep you comfortable before, during, and after treatment. We utilize anesthetics, modern technology, and our special comfort menu to keep your discomfort at a minimum.

So how much pain can you expect? Most patients compare the discomfort to a simple filling. 

How does putting off a root canal cause more pain?

If you have a tooth too damaged, infected, or decayed for a filling, root canal treatment is needed to remove infection and restore the function of your tooth. 

Avoiding treatment allows the infection to spread and go deeper, putting you at risk for an abscess. It can also lead to tooth loss.

Prompt treatment can save you from dental abscess pain, which is much worse than any discomfort caused by treatment. And if you already have abscess pain, removing the damaged and decayed tissue and cleaning out the canal should relieve your pain.

In addition, treatment can preserve your natural tooth. Here at Los Lunas Smiles, we are committed to doing everything we can to save teeth. This is not only healthier for you, but it lets you avoid the cost and inconvenience of tooth extraction and replacement with a dental implant or bridge.  

Enhanced Comfort Measures for Root Canal Treatment

Making you feel comfortable is one of the top priorities for our team at Los Lunas Smiles. This begins with making you feel welcome and heard. We will listen to your concerns, answer your questions, and work together to form goals.

If you are anxious or afraid of dental care, let us know. We can discuss options and find solutions to alleviate them. We also offer a unique comfort menu for you to choose from.

Some of the options on our comfort menu include:

  • Beverage options
  • Aromatherapy
  • Comfortable neck pillows
  • Warm face towels
  • Lip balm

When Our Comfort Menu Isn’t Enough

For patients who need more robust comfort measures, we offer sedation dentistry.

Sedation options include:

  • Nitrous Oxide

Also known as laughing gas, you breathe nitrous oxide into your lungs. It produces euphoria and relaxation and can be increased or decreased as desired. Since the effects dissipate quickly, you can drive yourself home.

  • Oral Sedation

Taken as a pill at least an hour before your procedure, oral sedation can also produce relaxation and euphoria. However, since the effects can last for hours, you will need a ride home.

Will I have pain after a root canal?

Since treatment thoroughly cleans out the canal, there are no nerves to cause pain in that tooth. However, the treatment can inflame surrounding teeth and tissues, which contain nerves, so you may experience mild to moderate discomfort or tenderness.

Some jaw soreness can also occur from having to keep your mouth open during the procedure.  

If you experience discomfort, ice packs and over-the-counter pain medications should provide you with relief. Good oral home hygiene is also essential to keep your teeth and gums free of harmful bacteria and food debris that can increase pain.

What if my pain is severe?

Pain not relieved with over-the-counter medications and ice packs could indicate something else is going on, such as an infection or tooth fracture.

It is vital to notify your dentist if you experience anything unusual after dental treatment. Symptoms to pay attention to include pain that interferes with your regular life, severe swelling, fever, an uneven bite, or feeling unwell. A follow-up appointment may be necessary to rule out or give attention to any potential complications.  

Do I need root canal treatment?

If you have tooth pain or sensitivity, a discolored tooth, swollen gums, or a chipped, cracked, or loose tooth, you may need a root canal. Prompt treatment is essential to reduce the pain, cost, and inconvenience of more complicated treatment.

Call our caring team at 505-865-4341 today to schedule an appointment with Dr. Yoon.

219 Courthouse Rd SE, Los Lunas, NM 87031
(505) 865-4341
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