What is a root canal?
A root canal is a dental procedure that is used to save a badly damaged tooth. Deep decay, an accident or repeated trauma to the tooth can damage the soft tissues within the tooth, which are called the pulp. The pulp contains blood vessels and the nerve of the tooth, and decay, a crack in the tooth or other problems can lead to infection or disease in these tissues. A root canal is used to remove these tissues, clean the canals of the tooth and seal the tooth against further contamination. Although it has a reputation for being one of the most painful dental procedures, many describe the pain as similar to a standard filling. In fact, root canals are designed to relieve pain. When you meet Marrero’s root canal specialist team at Southern Dental Care, we will explain your options for anesthetic and, if necessary, sedation during your procedure.
Do I need a root canal?
We may recommend a root canal if you have severe pain while chewing, pain that persists after exposure to cold or heat, swelling or a pimple in the gums near the tooth, throbbing pain that worsens at night, or discoloration of the tooth or gums near the tooth. A local anesthetic can be used at the site of the tooth to completely numb it before beginning. The tooth needs to be isolated to protect it from contamination, and once the canals of the tooth are accessed, the infection will be treated. Each canal is carefully shaped before being filled with a special material. Most people experience a dramatic reduction in pain after the root canal, but if the infection was severe, the pain may linger for a few days as the inflammation subsides. Our team can complete the restoration of the tooth with a filling or dental crown depending on the tooth and the extent of the damage.
Where to Go for a Root Canal?
Once the tooth has been restored, it can continue to function for many years. The restored tooth will need no special care, and any pain you felt before the root canal should be completely resolved. Brush and floss the restoration carefully when you clean your teeth, and visit us periodically for professional cleanings. Practicing healthy dental habits will help reduce your future need for root canals and serious dental disease. Give us a call to learn more about root canals and to meet Marrero’s root canal specialist team at Southern Dental Care!