Root canal therapy repairs and saves an average of seventeen million teeth each year. You can keep your tooth and stop the pain — sounds better than having your tooth pulled, right?
What Exactly Is a Root Canal?
A root canal is a dental technique that removes diseased nerves and tissues from the inside of a tooth. The thin canals underneath the nerve chamber in the center of the tooth are hollowed out, mechanically cleaned, chemically sterilized and the roots are filed rubber sealer called Gutta Percha.
A tooth is made up of three main parts:
- Enamel – a hard protective outer shell
- Dentin – a softer and sensitive middle
- Dental Pulp – inner layer referred to as dental pulp
Dental pulp is composed of nerve tissue, blood vessels and lymph tissue. These tissue are alive and are a vital part of a tooth. If dental pulp is traumatized — either by exposure to oral bacteria from a large cavity, a fracture in the tooth that enters the pulp or a forceful blow to the face — the tooth begins to die. Then root canal therapy is required to prevent or remove infection and prevent tooth loss.
A root canal procedure involves tooth sterilization and the removal of all dying tissue from the center of the tooth and the roots. Once a tooth’s canals are sufficiently cleansed and shaped, they are filled with Gutta Percha designed seal the tooth to prevent infection from recurring.
Root Canal Indications
The following signs may indicate that you have a diseased tooth or infected nerve. These signs include:
Minimal to severe pain.
Signs of infection visible on a x-ray.
Swelling and irritation in the surrounding gum tissue.
Dr. Nugent will recommend root canal treatment in such situations in order to save the diseased tooth and preserve its functionality.
Why Are the Associated Toothaches So Painful?
Nerve tissue, blood, and lymph tissues are contained in the tooth. When this tissue gets infected and dies the necrotic tissue leaks out of the tooth roots into the bone. The dying nerves plus necrotic tissue seeping into the bone causes severe pain. Furthermore, once dental pulp tissue begins to die and the body’s inflammatory responses set it. The combination of infection and inflammation causes significant pain. The end result is a raging toothache.
In cases where tooth extraction is the only solution, the missing tooth may be replaced with a dental implant. By replacing the entire structure of the tooth, a proper bite is maintained and the surrounding teeth are prevented from shifting. Plus, the dental implant does not damage adjacent teeth and is the only tooth replacement option that stimulates bone.
Dr. Michael Nugent is a leading Pasadena, Texas Dentist. He is the owner of his dental practice and despises corporate and franchise run dental offices. Dr. Nugent has been voted BEST PASADENA TEXAS DENTIST multiple times. Discover why patients drive from the surrounding area to come to our unique dental office.