The root canal is the passageway through to the center of the tooth where the pulp is located. The nerve of the tooth lies within the root canal. Due to infection or decay, a root canal treatment (sometimes referred to as root canal therapy) may be required to properly remove the infection or decay and preserve the tooth. If the tooth is left untreated repeated infection may occur, and permanent loss of the tooth (through extraction) may be the only remaining option. It is vital to treat infection and perform root canal therapy immediately after the problem is discovered. Doing so will offer the best chance of saving the majority of the tooth and also offer the most attractive results after treatment. Your dentist will explain the procedure in its entirety during your consultation.
What Happens During a Root Canal?
During root canal treatment, we begin by numbing the tooth. This is the same procedure as when fillings are placed. We then remove the unhealthy nerve and medicate the tooth to treat the infection (bacterial abscess). After the infection is treated and removed, a filling is placed in the roots where the unhealthy nerve was located.
Is My Tooth Different After a Root Canal?
Yes. Because the damaged nerve was removed and the tooth experienced infection, the tooth is now more brittle than before. Thus, it must be crowned to preserve it. Once the crown is in place, continue treating it the same as the remaining natural teeth by brushing and flossing daily and keeping up with regular preventative care through your semi-annual cleanings and annual examinations with our office.
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