Root canal therapy is needed when the nerve
of a tooth is affected by decay or infection.
To save the tooth, the pulp (the living
tissue inside the tooth), nerves, bacteria,
and any/all decay will be removed and the resulting
space is filled with special, medicated, dental
materials, which restore the tooth to its full
Many patients believe that removing a tooth that has problems
is the only solution which is incorrect. Root canal is the
treatment of choice to save a tooth that otherwise
would die or would be removed. It is very important to understand that extraction (pulling) a tooth will ultimately
be more costly and cause significant problems
for adjacent teeth.
Root canal treatment is highly successful and recommended that
usually lasts a lifetime, although on occasion,
a tooth will have to be retreated due to new
Signs and symptoms for possible root canal
What does root canal therapy involve?
A root canal procedure requires one or sometimes more
appointments and can be performed by a dentist
or endodontist (a root canal specialist), depending
on the location of the tooth and complexity
While the tooth is numb (local anesthesia), a rubber dam (a sheet
of rubber) will be placed around the tooth to
keep it dry and free of saliva. An access opening
is made on top of the tooth and a series of
root canal files are placed into the opening,
one at a time, removing the pulp, nerve tissue,
and bacteria. If tooth decay is present, it
will also be removed with special dental instruments.
Once the tooth is thoroughly cleaned, the roots
and the inside cavity of the tooth will be filled
and sealed with special dental materials. A
filling will be placed to cover the opening
on top of the tooth. In addition, all teeth
that have root canal treatment should have a
crown (cap) placed. This will protect the tooth
and prevent it from breaking, and restore it
to its full function.
After treatment, your tooth may still be sensitive,
but this will subside as the inflammation diminishes
and the tooth has healed.
At Healthy Smiles Dental, You will be given care instructions after each
appointment. Good oral hygiene practices and
regular dental visits will aid in the life of
your root canal treatment.