Root canals become necessary when a tooth becomes abscessed and the nerve must be severed.
A soft tissue called the pulp is inside your tooth, under the white enamel and a hard, thicker layer called the dentin. The pulp, which contains blood vessels and nerves, creates the surrounding hard tissues of the tooth during development.
The pulp extends from the crown, or chewing portion of the tooth, to the tip of the roots where it connects to the tissues surrounding the root. The pulp is important during a tooth’s growth and development. However, once a tooth is fully mature, it can survive without the pulp because the tooth continues to be nourished by the tissues surrounding the tooth.
You need a root canal due to pain or swelling, which indicates an inflamed or infected nerve. This can be caused by deep decay, repeated dental procedures on the tooth, a crack or chip in the tooth, or a blow to the tooth. Root canal therapy will alleviate the pain or swelling and keep the tooth an integral part of your dentition. Sometimes a tooth can be chronically infected and not cause any discomfort, but this can often be detected with x-rays and careful examination.
Signs to look for include pain, prolonged sensitivity to heat or cold, discoloration of the tooth, and swelling and tenderness in the nearby gums. Sometimes, however, there are no symptoms.
Dr. Silva can save your tooth by removing the inflamed or infected pulp, carefully cleaning and shaping the inside of the tooth, then filling and sealing the space. Afterwards, Dr. Silva will place a crown or other restoration on the tooth to protect it and restore it to full function!
If you have any questions about root canals therapy, speak with Dr. Silva or one of our team members today.