A ‘root canal’ is a dental procedure that removes an infected tooth’s nerves and pulp, or the entire tooth itself. This can often be accomplished in just one visit to our Boca Raton dentist office or over a few weeks, depending on the patient’s needs. Root canal procedures are typically done for two reasons:
- To preserve a tooth from extraction
- To relieve pain from severe cavities
What is a Root Canal Procedure, and Why is it Important?A root canal removes an abscessed tooth or infected pulp and nerve tissue from the inside of the tooth. Removing the pulp won’t affect the health of your tooth since it receives nourishment from the surrounding tissue. Removing the pulp will also eliminate future pain at the site. This treatment can be done without extracting the tooth, but it is more complex and requires more expertise. A root canal procedure is important because it can save as much of the tooth as possible. It also prevents future complications such as infection or swelling of the gum tissue.
What Happens During the Root Canal Procedure?The pulp in your tooth is soft tissue. It lies beneath the dentin which is right under the layer of white enamel. The purpose of the pulp is to help grow the root during its development. It also houses nerves, blood vessels, and connective tissues. The goal is to remove this while saving the tooth. In the case of an abscess, the entire tooth might be removed. Here are the steps that will be completed during your root canal procedure:
- Anesthesia is provided to numb the gums and nerves. Our office also provides nitrous oxide and oral sedation alternatives. We provide pain free dentistry if you experience anxiety during dental procedures.
- A small dental dam made of thin rubber is then placed over the area to be treated. This helps isolate and keep the area dry during the procedure.
- Your dentist will then drill through the top of the tooth. This small hole will provide access to the affected area.
- A small dental instrument is then used to remove tissue, blood vessels and nerves.
- Cleaning and disinfecting the site is the next step. The canals also shaped at this point to accommodate for the next step.
- Gutta-percha is now inserted into the canals. This rubbery substance is flexible and provides a fluid-tight seal in the canals.
- Your tooth is then restored with a filling to provide protection to the derma and enamel.
- If a filling cannot be used, you’ll receive a temporary filling to protect the tooth while a dental crown is made for the final restoration.
- A second and final visit will consist of the removal of the temporary filling and installation of the dental crown. There are some cases where a crown can be installed on the first visit, your dentist ill determine if that is possible.