Our teeth help us to chew food that needs to be broken down before it enters our digestive system so that our body can absorb the nutrients from them. It also helps us pronounce much more clearly and accurately. Our teeth also help us look better by preventing our facial muscles to sag. If teeth are not treated properly, they will likely to develop cavities, tooth decay, serious oral problems and can even cause tooth loss.
If a tooth can no longer be fixed with traditional fillings and you do not want to get your tooth extracted, you can undergo a root canal procedure to save it.
A root canal procedure is necessary when a tooth is severely injured or a large cavity damages the tooth’s root. It is commonly needed to save the tooth so that it can still stay in the mouth. Chipped teeth and dislodged teeth are often the root cause why a person needs a root canal procedure. Any injury concerning the tooth’s dental pulp requires further examination by a dentist or an endodontist as soon as possible. In some cases, neighboring teeth can be also affected because of the infection spreading to the bloodstream in our gums. The procedure makes the tooth dead, but it is already cleared from further infection and is sealed to prevent the disease to repeat.
Root Canal Procedure
During your first visit, your dentist will have to get an x-ray first to find the source of the infection of the pulp. The process starts with the numbing of the tooth by administering local anesthesia. If the pulp is inflamed and the patient still feels pain, it might take a while to get it numb, and your dentist will not start the procedure until it’s fine. The tooth is then accessed by drilling a hole allowing access the pulp chamber and root canals for treatment. After which, the infected pulp and dead tissue is removed using a special equipment.
Once the pulp and nerves are removed, the tooth can no longer feel any pain. The next step would be disinfecting the canals with antiseptic and antibacterial solutions. Then it would be shaped to allow them to receive sealers. The canals are then washed and cleaned again to remove some debris before sealing them with a filling material and top it off with your choice of either a crown, a filling or onlays for stability.
Since after the root canal procedure, the tooth is more fragile compared to other teeth. So when you decide on a restorative option, you should also consider giving additional strength to the remaining tooth structure. To decide what restorations you’re going to get, you need to talk to your dentist about it.