When the nerve of a tooth has become compromised due to decay or infection, a root canal may become necessary. In order to save the tooth, the pulp (the living tissue inside the tooth), nerves, bacteria, and any decay are removed and the resulting space is filled with special, medicated dental materials. This process helps restore the tooth to its full, pain-free function.
Root canals are the preferred method of choice in saving a tooth that would otherwise die or need to be extracted. Many patients have the mistaken belief that extracting a tooth is the solution to a decaying or diseased tooth. Extractions will ultimately be more costly in the long run and cause significant problems for the adjacent teeth. Why remove the tooth when you could save it?
Do You Need a Root Canal?
Some signs and symptoms that you may need root canal therapy include:
Reasons for root canal therapy:
What does Root Canal Therapy Involve?
While the tooth is numb, an access opening is made at the top and a series of root canal files are placed into the opening, removing the pulp, nerve tissue, and bacteria. If decayed tooth matter is present, it will also be removed using specialized dental instruments.
The roots and the cavity inside the tooth will be filled and sealed using sterile dental material. A filling will be placed to cover the opening at the top of the tooth. Additionally, all teeth that have received a root canal treatment should have a crown (cap) placed. This will protect the tooth from breaking and bacterial intrusion, as well as restore it to its full function.
If you are experiencing pain, it may be time to discuss root canal therapy — call Chelmsford Family Dentistry, today!