Most people think that going to their dentist and getting a root canal is a worrisome and dredaful experience. But the worries might just be a bit overstated. A root canal is actually a relatively painless procedure that is used to repair and save a tooth that has become badly decayed or infected.
The pain that people seem to worry about comes from the nerve damage to the tooth that can come from deep decay, a crack or chip on the tooth, or trauma to the face.
What You Really Need to Know
The cavity inside the center of the tooth is referred to as the root canal. It contains both the pulp and the nerve. During a root canal, the dentist clears out the pulp and the nerve in that tooth. They will then clean and seal the tooth.
Fortunately, once a tooth has emerged through the gumline, the nerve is not necessary for the health and function of the tooth. Without the nerve, all you lose is the ability to tell (with that tooth) if what you’re drinking or eating is hot or cold. Not a bad trade off, really.
The actual procedure begins with an x-ray so the dentist can see the shape of the canal and any signs of the infection. The area near the tooth is numbed, and an access hole is drilled into the tooth. The pulp, bacteria, decayed nerve tissue, and any other debris is removed, and the canal is scraped and scrubbed until it’s clean.
If an infection is present, the dentist will treat it with medication and apply a temporary filling. On the next appointment, the tooth will be filled, sealed, and covered with a crown or other restoration treatment to protect it and allow it to function normally.
Root canals have a success rate of over 95%, and most last a lifetime.
We here at the office of Dr. Max L Lingo, Evansville, Indiana dentist, feels that if you even remotely think that you need a root canal, contact our office to set up an appointment. If you feel that you need a dental implant or any other service, contact our office now if you need bonding & filling, cosmetic dentistry, dental implants, dentures & partials, extractions, sedation dentistry, teeth whitening, teeth cleaning, plaque removal and more.