Few words can strike fear in the hearts of some Hendricks County residents than the term “root canal.” A root canal is a routine dental treatment that repairs and saves a badly damaged or infected tooth. With today’s advanced dental techniques, a root canal is a procedure that you don’t need to fear.
Root Canal – A Nerve Channel Within a Tooth
In the center of your teeth, below the enamel and the hard layer of dentin is the pulp, an area of soft tissue. The pulp contains the blood vessels, nerves and connective tissues of the tooth.
Each tooth has a nerve that enters the tooth from the tip of its root, the part of the tooth that’s embedded into the bone. The nerve travels up the root to the pulp via small canals or channels. Each tooth has one to four of these root canals.
Root Canal – A Safe and Routine Dental Procedure
If you have a cracked or chipped tooth, a deep cavity, or some other type of deep trauma to a tooth, bacteria can enter the pulp. When this occurs, the pulp can become inflamed and infected. You will often feel pain when you bite, chew, or consume hot or cold food or drinks.
In order to relieve the pain and save your tooth, Dr. Jon Erickson at Danville Family Dentistry, located in Hendricks County, will recommend that you have a root canal procedure. This dental procedure involves numbing your tooth for your comfort and drilling a hole through the crown into the pulp chamber. The damaged nerve and pulp is removed from the chamber and the root canals. The entire area is cleaned and disinfected. If necessary, Dr. Erickson may inject medication directly into the pulp chamber and root canal to get rid of any remaining bacterial infection. Once everything is cleaned, the chamber and root canal are filled with gutta-percha, a special rubber-like substance, to seal the area. A temporary filling may be placed in the tooth to prevent contamination until the final tooth restoration can be completed. Once Dr. Erickson is ready to finish the tooth restoration, he will remove the temporary filling and install a crown or permanent filling to strengthen the tooth. When the tooth restoration is complete, your tooth will look and function like your other teeth.
If you don’t have the damaged or infected pulp removed, the tissues around the root of your tooth can become infected, causing pain and swelling. Bacteria can damage the bone that holds your tooth in your jaw. Eventually, you may have to have the tooth removed.
Schedule a Root Canal
With modern technology and advanced numbing agents, a root canal is actually a safe and routine procedure. Dr. Erickson has been expertly performing root canal procedures for over 15 years. Therefore, you have nothing to fear. Contact the Hendricks County office of Danville Family Dentistry to schedule an appointment if you’re experiencing tooth pain.