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Having your dentist say to you that you need a root canal, can be a daunting affair. This means that the pulp or soft tissue inside a tooth has been damaged by bacterial infection. A root canal involves removing the damaged pulp, cleaning the infection and filling in the emptied space. Not every tooth infection requires a root canal and hence it is essential to know the indication of a root canal.
Here are a few situations when a root canal may be needed:
- Pain: Discomfort ranging from a dull ache to a sharp pain can be a sign that you need root canal treatment. This type of pain is usually characterized by throbbing and may change as you switch positions. It is usually triggered by chewing, applying pressure on the tooth or eating something cold or hot. In some cases, the patient may not be able to indicate the exact tooth that is hurting but can only identify the painful area.
- Gun tenderness: Swelling that indicates the need of root canal treatment can range from being slightly red and inflamed to pronounced lumps on the gums. In some extreme cases, this swelling may extend out of the gums into the face and neck region. Sometimes, a pus filled boil with a pimple like head may also form on the gums. If this head bursts, the patient may notice a foul taste in the mouth. This swelling can come and go as the tooth decay deteriorates and may or may not be accompanied by pain. Teeth may also feel like they have been pushed out of their sockets and are taller than usual.
- Tooth discolouration: Discolouring of teeth can be a sign of internal tooth damage. This is especially noted if the teeth take on a dark yellow, grey or blackish tint. Tooth discolouration is fairly common in cases where the tooth has undergone trauma such as an accident etc.
- Exposure of the dental nerves: At times during regular dental work, the nerves in the tooth may be exposed. This indicates an exposure of pulp tissue and can trigger pulp degeneration if left untreated.
However, all of the above symptoms can be symptoms of other types of dental problems as well and do not necessarily individually indicate the need for a root canal. Only a dentist can properly diagnose a need for root canal treatment after a physical examination and testing.
Hi doctor I got pimple or may be whitehead inside my mouth near to uvula. Please suggest me prescription for it since three days I am facing this problem. I just want to know how to get rid off from this. Thank you.
Gum disease begins with the growth of bacteria in your mouth and it may end with loss of teeth. Thus, the severity of gum disease or periodontitis should not be underestimated. Tooth loss mainly happens due to the destruction of the tissue which surrounds the teeth.
Types of gum disease:
- Gingivitis: Gingivitis is basically the first stage of periodontitis. It causes bleeding from the gums and also causes immense pain in the teeth.
- Periodontitis: In periodontitis, the gum and teeth separate. A gap is formed between the two which may cause debris to accumulate in the space and cause other infections.
Causes of gum disease:
The exact cause of gum disease is not known but here are some of the possible causes:
- Hormonal changes: Hormonal changes during pregnancy, menopause and puberty are just some times the gums become more sensitive and gingivitis develops.
- Illnesses: Cancer, HIV, diabetes and other illnesses may cause problems with the immune system and damage the gums. This is an example of how gingivitis is caused as a complication of other disorders.
- Bad habits: Smoking causes gum disease as you may already know.
- Poor oral hygiene: Not brushing and flossing may lead to accumulation of food materials in the mouth causing gum diseases.
- Family history: Family history is also a major contributing factor to what may cause gum disease.
The treatment prescribed for gum disease depends how deep it is set and whether it is a case of gingivitis or periodontitis. Here are the possible treatments for gum disease:
- Professional dental cleaning: This is the most common treatment used in the early stages of gum disease. In fact, dental cleanings are usually used to prevent it and are used as soon as tartar and plaque buildup.
- Scaling and root planing: This is also a type of cleaning except that it needs to be done under a local anesthetic as there is a certain degree of pain involved in the procedure.
- Surgery: Surgery is also sometimes used to remove the infected pockets and put the gums back in their original place.