Root canal therapy is a process used to save a tooth when the pulp (the soft tissue inside the tooth containing blood vessels, nerves, and connective tissue) is injured or diseased. Pulp damage can be caused by a deep cavity, fracture, or crack in the tooth that extends close to or into the pulp chamber. In time, bacteria will enter a damaged pulp. If left untreated, the tooth can become infected with bacteria, and eventually, an abscess can form. This damage can result in losing the tooth entirely. When pulpal damage has occurred, pain is often – but not always – present. The doctors at West 10th Dental Group can diagnose the need for root canal therapy from an examination of the tooth and your description of any symptoms. Treatment is then rendered at our office.
To complete a root canal, any decay is first removed from the tooth. The inside of the tooth, or pulp chamber, and the tooth root canals are cleaned and prepared. Medication will also be placed into the tooth to help eliminate bacteria. Next, the root canals are filled with an elastic material. The final step to complete a successful root canal is to restore the tooth structure that has been lost through the decay or fracture. In many cases, this involves making a crown to place over the tooth. At West 10th Dental Group, we have found that when proper steps are taken and proper restoration of the tooth is completed, root canal therapy has a high rate of success with very minimal discomfort!