Most people have had a cavity treated at some point in their life; in some cases decay spreads to the inner pulp of a tooth, causing severe damage and infections throughout the tissue inside of the tooth and the nearby gum tissue. A relatively common procedure called a root canal is often necessary when a tooth becomes infected as a means to save it from extraction.
How Do Root Canals Work?
When a tooth is severely decayed, the inside of it is often severely damaged which makes the tooth weak. The first step of a root canal is to remove the crown of the affected tooth to allow the dentist to work on the inner area. Next, the decayed tissue is removed along with the inner pulp and the infected nerve. The inner area of the hollow tooth is then cleaned to remove bacteria and to create a good bonding surface for a composite material. Your dentist will then add a temporary filling and crown to the hollow tooth to allow time to see if the infected tissue has been removed entirely. Finally, the temporary crown and filling are replaced with permanent materials which will ensure a strong tooth that will last for decades.
Many people find the thought of receiving root canals to be terrifying because of concerns regarding pain. Root canals are entirely painless because your dentist will administer an appropriate anesthesia to keep you comfortable during the procedure.
It is important to practice proper oral hygiene by brushing and flossing your teeth regularly to help you avoid moderate to severe tooth decay. Remember to schedule routine visits with Smile Today for checkups to help find tooth decay in its earliest stages.