Infected or damaged teeth can be saved through root canal treatment, also referred to as root canal therapy or endodontic therapy.
A root canal becomes necessary when a neglected cavity reaches all the way to the pulp at the center of the tooth, causing the pulp to become infected. Regular cleanings and checkups detect and prevent problems before they worsen.
Trauma can also cause deep damage to the nerve of a tooth. Once this occurs, the pulp becomes infected and begins to eat away at the surrounding bone (this is called an abscess). By the time the pulp is infected it must be treated, and cannot heal on its own. If not treated properly, it can even weaken the entire immune system, making it very dangerous and painful.
Symptoms of infected pulp may include sensitivity to hot/cold or sweets, pain, swelling, pain with biting or pressure or a bad taste in the mouth. Sometimes, however, there are no symptoms, and you are unaware of any problem until your routine checkup.
A root canal is performed to clean out the infected tooth pulp and disinfect the canals of the tooth. The only other option would be to extract the tooth. Once the infection is resolved, the canal(s) is filled to prevent any further infection. Crowns are usually recommended to cover and restore a tooth after root canal therapy.
At The Dentist in Newark, we perform root canal treatment with great detail and precision to ensure your safety and comfort. If you have any questions regarding root canals, please give us a call.