A root canal is a dental procedure that involves treating the “pulp” of the tooth, i.e., the soft center of the tooth that contains the nerves, blood vessels, and connective tissue that make up a tooth. Root canal therapy is performed when this pulp is infected or damaged, and it can save a tooth from further decay.
You can consult specialists who perform root canal therapy in Bismarck to learn more about root canal therapy and its benefits.
How do I know if I need a root canal?
The infection at the center of the tooth is caused by bacteria that live in the mouth and attack the tooth slowly, leading to decay. The pulp can become inflamed or irritated even due to repeatedly performing dental procedures on the same tooth or because of trauma to the tooth, which may have led to its breakage or crack.
The visible part of our teeth above the gums can remain intact even after the tooth’s center has suffered trauma and developed an infection. The removal of the pulp becomes urgent in such a situation as it is the best way to preserve the tooth’s structure. You will be able to determine if you need root canal therapy if you experience any of the following:
- Extreme toothache when chewing, biting, or applying any pressure.
- Inflammation in the gums. The gums in the vicinity of the affected tooth also become tender and painful.
- Residual sensitivity issues to heat or cold, even after the source of the heat or cold has been removed.
- Discoloration of the tooth.
- Development of pimples on the gums.
- Facial swelling.
- Generation of pus from the teeth.
- Tooth becoming loose.
As the infection worsens, the pulp begins to die. These symptoms may also die down with the pulp, but this is not an indication of recovery. The deterioration of the pulp means that the infection has spread through the root canal system. This must be urgently addressed by a professional.
Process of root canal therapy
Root canal therapy involves various steps:
- The doctor takes x-rays of the tooth that is to be treated. They give local anesthesia, and after the tooth is numb, a sheath called a “dental dam” is put around the tooth to isolate it from saliva and other teeth for protection.
- The doctor makes an incision over the tooth’s crown and cleans the infected and damaged pulp with special instruments. The space is shaped for the filling.
- The doctor fills the space created after the cleaning with a rubber-like material, and for the exterior, they perform fillings.
- If needed, the doctor will also perform some restoration procedures of the treated tooth to prevent further damage and decay.