The purpose of a root canal is to clean out infection that has penetrated the root base of a tooth. The goal is to save the tooth and prevent the infection from spreading resulting in an abscess that can produce great discomfort and possibly spread to other parts of the body.
Without a root canal, the likelihood of salvaging the tooth is minimal if infection is present.
With a root canal, the dentist will seal the entire mouth to isolate the tooth being treated. This keeps the area dry and allows the dentist to remove all of the diseased particles to prevent them from spreading to other parts of the mouth or accidentally swallowed.
An instrument is used to reach the spaces that house the nerves in the root of the tooth. This instrument will grab the nerve of the tooth and remove it. Medication is placed in the tooth to clear up any residual infection and to seal the tooth until the final restoration is applied.
Once the nerve and infection are treated, the tooth is usually still viable. A final restoration in the form of either a composite filling or a crown will cover the tooth. The tooth being treated usually dictates what type of restorative treatment is needed after the root canal.
There are many circumstances that can occur that might result in a root canal. Dental decay that has gone unchecked can allow bacteria to penetrate the tooth resulting in infection. A crack in a tooth can be negligible to the naked eye, but big enough to result in infection. Trauma to a tooth can result in a needed root canal right away, or the problem can slowly develop over time.
Without a root canal, the likelihood of salvaging the tooth is minimal if infection is present. It is important to do whatever is possible to save a tooth. Many might just want to pull a tooth rather than work to save it, but saving a tooth is always preferable to losing a tooth.
Once a tooth has been lost, failure to replace a lost tooth with either a dental implant or a prosthetic device can impact eating, speaking, and smiling; quality of life can be affected due to dietary changes or loss of self-confidence.
A successful root canal can ultimately save extensive costly dental work, but more importantly can bring relief from the discomfort of an infected tooth.
If you think you are in need of a root canal, or simply want more information about the treatment process, call The Dental Place, serving Arlington Texas and neighboring areas, today to schedule an appointment.