At the core of your tooth, there is an area referred to as the pulp. The pulp contains blood vessels that nourish the tooth and keep it from becoming brittle. The pulp also acts as a sensory organ, detecting changes in pressure and temperature at the tooth surface. If the pulp is damaged or infected for any reason it can result in pain, swelling, bone damage and loss of the tooth. To save the original tooth and avoid complications associated with damaged pulp, root canal therapy is often an option.
A successful root canal treatment lets you keep the tooth and avoid costly procedures such as implants or dentures. The process involves creating an opening in the tooth then, using very fine dental instruments, removing the pulp by cleaning and enlarging the root canal system.
The root canal area, once free of infections, is filled and sealed. As the tooth no longer receives nutrients, it will be more brittle than surrounding teeth. For this reason, we create a crown or cap depending on the strength of the part of the tooth that's left. Once ready, the crown/cap is cemented in place and "your tooth," rather than an artificial replacement, keeps its place in your smile.
The root canal may involve several visits to our office, as it is done in stages.
Contact us at our Bathurst and College dental office if you have any questions about root canals!