Has your endodontist told you that you need root canal treatment? Millions of people have been able to save their natural smiles by turning to root canals to preserve an infected or damaged tooth. If you are experiencing tooth pain as a result of an infection, trauma or decay, then it’s time to find out how your endodontist can preserve your smile.
It’s important to understand a little about the anatomy of a tooth before learning more about what a root canal can do for your oral health. Behind the hard, enamel layer of your tooth lies deeper tissue known as the pulp. This structure is made up of nerves, connective tissue and blood vessels, and is responsible for the growth of your tooth’s root while the tooth is still developing; however, after the tooth is done growing the pulp is not vital to the survival of the tooth.
Our goal as an endodontist is to care for and treat problems that develop within the inside of a tooth. A root canal may be recommended if you have an infected or inflamed pulp. As we mentioned earlier, there are a number of reasons why a pulp may be causing your dental issues including decay or faulty dental work. When the pulp becomes infected or inflamed, patients often experience pain. If left untreated, an abscess may begin to form near the infected tooth.
During a root canal, the problem pulp is removed and then the inside of the tooth is disinfected to remove bacteria and infection. A root canal is performed under local anesthesia and isn’t any more invasive than getting a tooth filled.
Once the inside of the tooth has been effectively cleaned, we will use a rubbery material known as gutta percha, which will seal the inside of the tooth and prevent bacteria and other debris from entering the tooth. Most teeth that have undergone root canal therapy will require a dental crown, a tooth-shaped cap that goes over the tooth to protect it from further damage and to restore aesthetics.
Most root canals can be performed in one to two visits, depending on the severity of your condition and your overall health.
To find out more about root canal treatment or other endodontic services we offer, contact our dental office today.