Pain management during Endodontics procedures
Posted on 07/10/2023

At Short Pump Dental, our goal is to make your  dental visits as comfortable as possible. We are a family dentist in Henrico, and we offer treatments such as general  dentistry, pediatric dentistry, implant dentistry, oral surgery, and endodontics. Endodontics is typically where you'll turn if you need a root canal.

What Is an Endodontics Procedure?

When the dental pulp inside your tooth becomes inflamed or infected, an abscess may form and you'll feel intense pain. The infected pulp may affect the gums around the tooth as well. Dentists will typically recommend a root canal as a solution.

With specialized tools, dentists will remove the infected pulp and clean the root canal. Once clean, dentists will then shape the canal and fill it with a material called gutta-percha. This will seal off the canal and prevent the area from getting re-infected. After the procedure, dentists may recommend a crown so that your treated tooth gets additional protection.

Who Needs an Endodontics Procedure or Root Canal?

A root canal is usually recommended for people who have infected or damaged dental pulp inside their tooth. What causes the dental pulp to become infected or damaged?

  • Tooth Decay: If your tooth has been decaying for a while and it has gone untreated, the decay may have penetrated the dental pulp. Bacteria can then infect the pulp, resulting in an infection.
  • Physical Injury: A physical injury can damage the dental pulp. This may be due to a sports injury or a blow to the head.
  • Cracked/Fractured Tooth: A fractured or cracked tooth may expose your dental pulp to bacteria , which can then lead to infection.
  • Large Fillings: Sometimes a large filling can eventually weaken the tooth, leading to fracture and potentially exposing the dental pulp.
  • Gum Disease: Gum disease or periodontitis can force the gums to recede, exposing the tooth roots to bacteria.

Ways to Manage Pain During an Endodontics Procedure

If you have been scheduled for an endodontics procedure, you can talk with our team about the different ways to manage your pain during the procedure. Here is a general breakdown of the ways we can make the process easier:

  • Topical Anesthetic: Before giving you the anesthesia injection, the dentist will apply a topical anesthetic. This gel numbs the surface temporarily, which helps make the injection tolerable.
  • Local Anesthesia: Local anesthesia is the most common method to control pain during a dental procedure. The dentist will inject an anesthetic agent near the tooth to numb the area.
  • Nitrous Oxide (Laughing Gas): Dentists can also use Nitrous oxide. Nitrous oxide is colorless and odorless, and it is administered via a mask that the dentist will place over your nose. It is a type of sedation and can help reduce your anxiety during dental procedures.
  • Distraction Techniques: Some people prefer not to take anything to manage the pain. In this case, there are distraction techniques, such as watching a movie or listening to music.

Visit Our Dentists at Short Pump Dental
If you are having any dental discomfort and think you may need a root canal, schedule an appointment with our dentists at Short Pump Dental. We'll examine your teeth and determine if you need a root canal. You can also find out more about our endodontics procedure.