A root canal is the space inside the tooth that travels down the length of the root to the tip. Human teeth usually have from one to four canals depending on the anatomy of the tooth. A damage or infection to the nerve of the tooth that originates from the pulp chamber results in aches, pains and the need in root canal therapy.

What can be a cause of a root canal?

The common reasons for root canals are:

  • Tooth decay – tooth decay may invade the tooth and infect it.
  • Trauma – the nerve can get exposed from the chipped or broken tooth.
  • Aging – the teeth age and dye because of the unhealed past traumas. The damage may be insignificant but it can lead to bigger problems such as a root canal.

Root canal therapy:

The root canal therapy is a treatment procedure performed by your dentist. The number of visits may vary depending on a particular situation, infections, and abscess.

A simple procedure includes:

Dental X-ray – Your dentist performs a “periapical x-ray” to display the entire tooth on the film. This allows your dentist to see the damage more clearly and determine the treatment easier.

Anesthesia – Your dentist will usually put you under local anesthesia to “numb” your tooth.

Drilling – The dentist begins the procedure by drilling a hole to assess the nerve of the tooth.

Nerve Removal – The nerve and infected tissue is removed from your tooth. Your dentist uses files and instruments to ensure that all the damaged tissue is removed from the tooth.

Sealing – Once the tooth has been cleaned, absorbent paper points are used to dry the area out completely. Special materials are used to seal the tooth.

Filling – After removing the remaining decay your dentist places the filling.

These are just the basic steps of a root canal procedure, please contact your Virginia Beach Dentist The Art of Dentistry for more information.