Root canal treatment, also simply known as a root canal, is a surgery performed on a tooth when tooth decay has reached the nerves. Inside of a tooth, beneath the hard enamel that acts as a protective layer, there is a soft tissue called the pulp. Many people do not realize this, but teeth are living, and they have nerves, and blood vessels and soft tissue inside. It is very important to try and prevent this part of the tooth from becoming compromised.
Robert J. Malone DDS can accommodate your future root canal, and alleviate pain, discomfort, and prevent the further spread of tooth decay by referring you to a trusted dentist.
Why do I Need a Root Canal?
Not only is there the issue of decay reaching the pulp, and compromising the inner tissue of a tooth, but someone who needs a root canal will be experiencing moderate pain from toothache. Toothache is the most common symptom, but sensitivity to hot/cold food, headaches, swelling of the affected area and a bump in the gum below the tooth are all symptoms of needing a root canal.
You should visit us if you are experiencing these issues, and Dr. Robert Malone will be able to tell you the root cause. It is important to have a root canal if possible, in order to preserve as much of the natural tooth as possible and prevent the tooth decay from spreading further in the oral cavity.
A patient must be prepared for root canal treatment. This will be through the use of local anesthesia, which numbs the area of the tooth receiving root canal treatment, and the placing of a rubber dam over the tooth. This helps prevent any fluids interfering with the treatment, such as saliva.
A small hole is made in the biting surface of your affected tooth. This is done to allow access to the pulp, so we can remove not only the decayed parts of the tooth, but all the pulp. Because the pulp has been compromised by decay, it is all removed to prevent future pain.
A chemical solution is used to clean the inside of the tooth, and ensure no bacteria remain. A rubber-like material called gutta percha is used to replace the pulp of the tooth. The tooth is now effectively dead, if it wasn’t already, but still has the enamel surrounding it. This is good for aesthetic reasons, but also to prevent the need for more invasive surgery, and to maintain natural support in the mouth.
A temporary filling is placed, and a permanent crown will be made for a later appointment. Measurements are taken after the filling has been placed, in order to make a crown that will fit comfortably over the tooth.
Root canal treatment usually takes 30-60 minutes but may take more than one appointment. The severity of the tooth decay and how difficult the procedure is will affect the time.
Robert J. Malone DDS wants to help alleviate your toothache and restore your mouth to a happy and healthy condition. Call us at (760) 546-5557 now to book your next appointment.