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Preventing Root Canal Infections: What You Can Do

By Dr. Silvers on December 05, 2014


A woman smiling in a white roomAt Silvers Family Dental Care here in Harrisburg, we believe preventative care is a way of promoting total wellness. While we offer restorative dentistry procedures that improve the health of the teeth and gums, we feel that patients can do a lot to avoid major dental problems if they have the proper knowledge at their disposal. This is why we would like to focus on the nature of root canal infections and what you can do to prevent them from occurring.

What is a root canal infection?

A root canal infection refers to bacteria breaching the outer layers of a tooth and affecting the soft tissue within.

You see, within each tooth is a hollow chamber that is filled with dental pulp. This soft tissue contains nerves and blood vessels that were essential for the formation and maturation of the tooth. This internal soft tissue is protected by the outer enamel layer and the inner dentin layer of tooth structure, and the pulp helps send sensual information down into the root with regard to hot and cold substances as well as feelings of pressure.

The Dangers of a Root Canal Infection

When the dental pulp becomes infected, this can be extremely painful. It often causes people to experience throbbing pains. Left untreated, the infection can spread to other parts of the mouth, including the jawbone, the gums, and adjacent teeth.

When your tooth becomes infected, the only way to save the tooth from extraction is root canal therapy, which will involve removal of the dental pulp. The preventative tips below will help you avoid dental infections and root canal therapy.

Regular Dental Care Is Key to Prevention

The basics are always a great part of solid dental health and total wellness. Be sure to brush your teeth at least twice a day and to floss your teeth at least once a night. Ideally you will want to brush and floss after every meal.

Wear Mouth Protection During Sports

A major injury to the mouth can expose the dental pulp to bacteria and lead to infection. In order to prevent this from occurring, it's a good idea to wear a mouth guard when you are playing sports. This is especially worth considering if you participate in contact sports or combat sports.

Do Not Chew on Hard and Inedible Objects

Chewing on pen caps and fingernails is a bad habit that you should avoid. Not only is it socially unacceptable, but these actions actually increase the risk of damaging a tooth and causing an infection of the dental pulp.

Quit Using Tobacco Products

Tobacco products have a number of negative effects on your health. One of the major impacts on your dental wellness is making you more susceptible to gum disease and gum recession. Both of these conditions can increase the chances of serious tooth decay occurring and hence increases the chances of a potential root canal infection. This is just another compelling reason to quit.

Attend Your Routine Dental Checkups

Routine dental exams every six months allow a dentist to thoroughly clean your teeth and take care of minor problems before they become major health issues. Getting a cavity treated early can mean the difference between a filling and a root canal infection.

Seek Emergency Care Immediately If a Tooth Is Injured

If you are involved in an accident or incident in which a tooth had been damaged, be sure to seek dental treatment as soon as you are reasonably able. This will help you get the treatment you need to avoid a root canal infection.

Schedule a Consultation at Silvers Family Dental Care

For more information about the things that you can do to improve your overall dental health and wellness, be sure to contact our cosmetic and restorative dentistry center today. The team here at Silvers Family Dental Care will be more than happy to discuss your treatment options and means of prevention in greater detail during your visit.

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4392 Sturbridge Dr
Harrisburg, PA 17110

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