Many fear the words “root canal.” To paraphrase former President Franklin Roosevelt, “the only thing you have to fear is fear itself.” Today, advances in treatment and technology make a root canal a relatively comfortable and painless procedure.
Why Have a Root Canal?
When the pulp that is inside the enamel outer layer of your tooth becomes infected with bacteria due to injury or untreated cavities, your body alerts you through swelling or pain in the area. Left untreated, a severe infection could cause damage to bone around the tooth, putting you at high risk of losing the tooth completely. Fortunately, once a tooth is fully developed, it doesn’t need that inner pulp because it gets nutrients from the surrounding tissues. This means the infected pulp can be removed, allowing us here at Dental Care of Boca Raton the opportunity to save the tooth.
Imaging is done to obtain a clear picture of the tooth and surrounding bone, and a plan is formulated. For the root canal, a local anesthesia will be applied so the procedure itself will be painless. During the root canal:
- A protective layer is placed over the tooth to keep it clean and dry.
- An opening is made in the crown of the tooth, and the infected pulp is removed.
- Once cleaned of infection and dried, the tooth cavity will be filled with a compound to protect the tooth. Sometimes, medication will be put in the chamber to fight stubborn infection. The opening in the crown is closed with a temporary filling.
- To restore function and strength to the tooth, we will finish the treatment in a subsequent visit by replacing the temporary filling with a permanent crown or similar restorative. If the prior damage to the tooth was extensive, a post may be inserted in the tooth for structural support before installing the crown.
When you consider that a root canal literally is a tooth-saving procedure, it’s worth a little potential discomfort. With proper care, your restored tooth could last your lifetime.
Our goal is to relieve your pain and, whenever possible, to save your teeth. We serve patients in Boca Raton, Florida, and the surrounding areas, so contact our office today and together we can come up with a treatment plan that will allow you to enjoy a beautiful and healthy smile.
The Dental Care of Boca Raton Team