Root canal therapy or "Endodontic treatment" is a procedure that is performed in order to save the natural tooth. When the nerve of your tooth becomes infected, having a successful root canal treatment enables you to keep the tooth, as opposed to having it pulled. Keeping your tooth helps prevent your remaining teeth from drifting out of line, which can lead to jaw problems down the road. As well, saving your natural tooth avoids having to replace it with an artificial tooth.
Even though there are many advanced restoration procedures available today, the majority of dentists agree that there really is no substitute for natural teeth, as long as they are healthy.
Signs and symptoms of endodontic problems:
The following issues may be a symptom or a sign of an endodontic problem: Teeth that are sensitive to cold or hot foods or beverages, unexplained pain in the nearby lymph nodes, discoloration of the tooth, tenderness when biting and chewing, or tenderness and inflammation in the gums.
How is a root canal treatment done?
The first step in a root canal treatment is receiving a local anesthetic or freezing from the dentist. Next, the dentist places a rubber dam around the tooth that is being treated. This step helps to protect your tooth from bacteria that is found in your saliva during the treatment. The dentist will then make an opening in the tooth to reach the root canal system and locate the damaged pulp. The dentist will then remove the pulp by utilizing very fine dental instruments. The root canal system is cleaned and enlarged during this process.
Once the canal has been cleaned, the dentist will fill and then seal the canal. Lastly, the opening of the tooth is sealed either with a permanent or temporary filling. The dentist will ensure that you leave with the appropriate care instructions and will advise you on what to expect over the first few days after the procedure. For example, some patients may need to chew on the other side of their mouth as it may be tender temporarily after the freezing wears off, although, others may feel back to normal right away.
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