How Does My Tooth Get Infected?
If you need a root canal, it is because the tooth is infected. Decay can happen, and if left untreated, can penetrate deeper into the tooth and into the nerve (or the "pulp"). At this point, it is usually very painful, and the nerve has been infected. This will not go away on its own and can lead to abscess, tooth loss, and bone loss. Saving a natural tooth avoids having to replace it with an artificial tooth.
What Is Root Canal Therapy?
A Root Canal is a dental procedure that involves removing the nerve of the infected tooth in order to "save" the tooth. Advancements in dental technologies have made root canal treatment far less scary and more predictable then in the past. From the patients perspective, having a root canal is not much different than having a filling; it just takes a little longer.
After the nerve is removed, it's important to know that the strength of the tooth is now compromised. When you remove the nerve, you remove the tooth's nutrient system as well, leaving it more susceptible for fracturing. When a filling is placed, whether after a root canal or to fill a decayed area, the enamel that is removed during the procedure leaves the tooth weaker. It is impossible to predict when or how severe the fracture could be, but proper preventive measures are recommended such as placing a crown (or a "cap") on the tooth as the tooth is no longer structurally sound. This helps to prevent fractures, especially severe cases such as at the gum line- at which the tooth may not be saved and would require extraction.
If you have any questions about Root Canal Therapy, ask your Dental Hygienist or Dr. Gray when you come in to see us.
What Is Root Canal Therapy?
Our conservative dentistry understands the reservations many have with dental work and strives to make the latex free procedure as comfortable as possible for you.
First, the area is anesthetized, and a rubber dam is placed in order to isolate the tooth to protect it from bacteria from your saliva. Our Newmarket Dentist, Dr. Gray, will then make an opening in the tooth to reach the root canal system and the infected nerve. Using very fine dental instruments, he will then remove the damaged nerve by cleaning and enlarging the root canals. After the canals are cleaned out, they are filled with a rubber-like material and a filling is then placed at the opening of the tooth. Tenderness after is generally minimal. Normally, your tooth can feel bruised and be tender to bite on for about a week. Afterwards you will be able to enjoy the foods you like again without pain from hot, cold or pressure.
We would be happy to help please give us a call at our Newmarket Dental Office (905) 853-9355