Root canals can save damaged or diseased teeth from extraction. This relatively common dental procedure can help cure serious infections and prevent re-infection from occurring, while also relieving the intense pain of toothaches caused by infected pulp and abscesses underneath the roots. Here at Dental Smiles of Willow Glen, we have provided this important service for countless patients — and we can help you too.
Root canals involve the removal and replacement of diseased pulp. Healthy pulp provides a source of blood and nourishment for the tooth. Deep cavities, chips, cracks, or other breaches in the enamel can expose the pulp to bacteria, causing serious injections that may fill the pulp chamber and work their way down below the root tips, forming abscesses in the jawbone that can lead to bone loss. Since the pulp contains sensitive nerve endings, you may experience severe pain in the tooth. This means that the pulp can be safely removed if it becomes infected.
A root canal treatment usually takes two sessions, especially if an infection still rages in your mouth. The tooth is opened into the pulp chamber, where the nerve tissue is removed and the root canal is cleaned out to eliminate any remaining bacteria once and for all. A flexible material called gutta-percha is then inserted into the canals to replace where the original nerve used to be. A permanent crown is recommended after the completed root canal to provide support. If a crown is to be added, we may reinforce it in advance by placing a metal or fiber post inside the root.