If a tooth needs a root canal treatment but doesn’t have any pain, is it a dental emergency or can it wait? On that note, if it can wait, how long can it wait?
This is kind of tricky to answer because I have not examined your tooth. I think, however, I can give you some general guidelines. If the tooth is hurting in any way (which you say yours is not) then, I would consider it a dental emergency and you would need to get treatment as soon as possible. You would not necessarily need to schedule it for that day, but as soon as they can.
I would say that if it starts hurting again, go in fairly soon as well. Both of those scenarios indicate that you have an active tooth infection that needs to be treated. Dental infections spread and can blow up pretty quickly. You do not want it spreading to your heart, lungs, or brain, all of which are close to your jaw.
If it is not hurting and has not for a while, you should be able to wait. I had a colleague who had a patient with a tooth that needed a root canal that waited several years. This was only possible because the infection was not active.
What was interesting to me about this case is that apparently, even though the infection wasn’t active, the fact that it had been infected was having an impact on his health. The patient felt unexplainably worn down all the time, even though he was getting enough sleep and his thyroid levels were good. The cause turned out to be the tooth. After he had his root canal treatment, he told my colleague that he felt better than he had in a while.
This blog is brought to you by Lafayette, LA dentists Drs. Foreman and Thimmesch.