Root Canal

Root canal therapy is a process of removing a nerve from a tooth that has become infected or injured. The space inside the hard walls of a tooth is called a root canal. Root canal therapy is required when the pulp has become infected or damaged. Depending on the condition of the tooth overall the dental practitioner will determine if possible to preserve and save a natural tooth from being extracted.

Root canal therapy can sometimes require more than one appointment based on the severity of the tooth condition. Upon completion of healing a crown is secured over the treated tooth to protect the tooth.

Root canal treatment, often simply referred to as a “root canal,” is a dental procedure used to treat a tooth that has a damaged or infected pulp (the innermost part of the tooth). The pulp contains nerves, blood vessels, and connective tissue. When the pulp becomes inflamed or infected due to deep decay, a cracked tooth, or trauma, a root canal is performed to remove the infected or damaged pulp and save the tooth.

Here’s an overview of the root canal treatment process:

1. Diagnosis: The dentist will examine the tooth, take X-rays, and assess the extent of the damage or infection to determine if a root canal is necessary.

2. Anesthesia: Local anesthesia is administered to numb the affected tooth and the surrounding area, ensuring that the patient is comfortable during the procedure.

3. Access Opening: The dentist creates a small opening in the crown of the tooth to access the pulp chamber and root canals.

4. Pulp Removal: The infected or damaged pulp is removed from the pulp chamber and the root canals. The canals are then cleaned and shaped to prepare for the filling material.

5. Filling: The cleaned and shaped root canals are filled with a biocompatible material called gutta-percha. This material seals the canals to prevent further infection.

6. Sealing the Access Opening: The access opening created in the crown of the tooth is sealed with a temporary or permanent filling.

7. Restoration: In many cases, a tooth that has undergone a root canal may need further restoration with a dental crown. This is because the tooth, having lost its pulp, can become brittle over time. A crown provides strength and protection to the treated tooth.

Root canal treatment is an effective way to save a tooth that might otherwise need to be extracted. It alleviates pain and resolves infection, allowing the patient to retain their natural tooth. After a successful root canal, the tooth can function normally, and with proper care, it can last a lifetime.

It’s important to note that modern dental techniques and anesthesia make root canal treatment relatively comfortable for patients. If you experience symptoms such as severe toothache, swelling, or sensitivity to hot and cold that persists, it’s crucial to see a dentist promptly for an evaluation. Early intervention can often prevent the need for more extensive dental procedures.

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