Root canal treatment, also known as endodontic therapy, is provided when a tooth’s soft interior, known as the pulp, has become damaged by infection or decay. This treatment can often save a tooth from extraction.
Each tooth has at least one nerve that runs through the tooth and connects to the underlying tissues. The nerve is the life source of the tooth. This nerve and is surrounded by nutrients in a soft tissue called pulp, which lies in a chamber inside the tooth known as a root canal. If the pulp becomes infected or exposed (due to decay or structural damage), it can be very painful.
A root canal procedure begins with the use of local anesthetic through an injection. Once the tooth and surrounding area are numb, our dentist will access the inside of your tooth through an incision from the top. We will then remove the pulp and clean the chamber thoroughly. An antimicrobial solution will also be administered to the chamber to prevent future bacteria from building and causing damage or decay. Finally, we fill the nerve cavity with an inert material called gutta-percha after a thorough cleaning. A tooth that has a root canal done on it almost always needs a crown to be placed as well to reinforce the strength of the tooth.
If you’re experiencing signs or symptoms of an infected root canal, it may be time to remove the decay before it affects your tooth further. Please give our dental office a call at (208) 922-1755 to schedule an appointment today.