We are often asked “What exactly is a root canal?”. To best explain what the procedure is we should start by explaining the circumstances where a root canal would be necessary. Root canal therapy is performed to save a tooth that has been infected, or affected by a deep cavity, trauma, or fracture that caused irreversible damage to the nerve of the tooth. Treatment involves removing the nerve, disinfecting, and filling the inside of the tooth where the nerve once was. If treatment is not performed, bacteria builds up at the root tip and infection can spread to the surrounding bone and circulate throughout your body. This results in pain and swelling, and the possibility of removing the tooth.
What are the signs that a root canal is needed?
- Severe tooth pain that is spontaneous or while chewing
- Your tooth pain wakes you up at night
- Teeth that are highly sensitive to hot or cold, that lingers for some time
- Discoloration or darkening of the tooth
- Swollen gums in the area of the infected tooth
What does root canal therapy involve?
Root canals developed a bad reputation years ago because the techniques to perform them were less than ideal. Nowadays, you are typically treated with an antibiotic prior to the procedure, making it absolutely painless. Once the root canal therapy is completed, the tooth will require a porcelain crown, and because we are able to provide comprehensive treatment at Grady Dental Care we can complete the crown preparation immediately after the root canal and save you a trip!