24 Oct What to Expect During Your Ravenswood Root Canal
A root canal is a treatment that targets infected teeth. Sometimes, despite a thorough dental care routine, our teeth may become sensitive or infected. A root canal is necessary when the pulp of the tooth, which contains the nerves, becomes infected, inflamed, or irritated due to tooth decay. This can cause a lot of pain, and the infection can spread to other teeth and other areas of the body through the bloodstream. A Ravenswood area dentist will attempt to discover the source of the pain and determine if a root canal is necessary.
The root canal procedure is meant to preserve and clean an infected tooth. It is fairly straightforward—a hole is drilled through the tooth in order to reach the pulp and the nerve, which are both removed. The canal is then disinfected and scrubbed clean. Then, the dentist will fill the remaining area with a filling.
Why Are the Nerve and the Pulp Removed?
The nerve is not essential to the health and function of the tooth, so its removal does not affect the day-to-day comfort of the patient. Its only function is to detect whether a food or liquid is hot or cold. The pulp contains the nerve, and when it is damaged, it starts to break down, allowing bacteria to multiply within the tooth. These bacteria, along with debris from the decay, will start to cause an infection or an abscess. An abscess is a pocket of pus that is formed at the root of the tooth, next to the jawbone. The infection can also cause swelling that spreads to other areas of the face, head or neck. In some cases, the abscess can block bone growth around the root of the root of the tooth and can cause bone loss.
What to Expect During Treatment
The root canal procedure can take more than one office visit, and it is performed either by a dentist or an endodontist (a specialist that treats diseases and injuries of the dental nerve and pulp). Endodontists generally come into the picture if the infection is widespread and the procedure would be too difficult for a general dentist to perform.
At the start of the procedure, you will likely need an x-ray in order to determine the severity of the root canals and the extent of the infection. Your dentist will then use local anesthesia if the nerve is still alive, and he or she will place a rubber dam around the tooth in order to keep the area surrounding it dry.
Using a drill, the dentist will open up the tooth and reach the pulp, which will then be removed from the tooth along with any decayed nerve tissue and debris. This clean-up process is performed using a series of root canal files of increasing diameter, which scrub the inside of the root canals.
Once the tooth is clean, the dentist may either seal it up, or add medication inside the tooth that will need to be removed within a week. This is then followed up by the sealing process. In some cases, the dentist will finish the procedure with a temporary filling that is meant to last until your next dental appointment.
Want to Find an Expert Ravenswood Dentist and Dental Office for a Root Canal?
If you think you may need a root canal, the staff at Dental Innovations is here to help. We offer several advanced services pertaining to family dentistry in Ravenswood and all of Chicago, including tooth-colored fillings, inlays and onlays, bonding, implants, and dental impressions, among others. We would be glad to answer any questions you may have about dental health. Contact us today to get started!