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cross section of a tooth showing pulp and nerve tissue

Root Canals

When the nerve of a tooth becomes infected, the result can be pain and discomfort. It is natural to conclude that the tooth should be removed to stop the pain. However, this is often not the recommended treatment. It is best to take measures to save the tooth whenever possible in order to preserve that space in the mouth and retain its function.

Root Canal Therapy

A root canal is the preferred treatment, rather than extraction, for an infected tooth. Saving the tooth and its supportive role in the mouth can help prevent more extensive and costly dental procedures down the road, such as bridge replacement, a dental implant or dentures.

To perform a root canal our dentist, or an endodontic specialist, will make a small opening in the crown of the tooth and remove the infected tissue and nerve from the root. The canal is then disinfected and sealed. Because there is no longer blood flow to the tooth following a root canal, the enamel is more susceptible to fracture. The tooth should be restored with a crown to protect it from further damage.

There is no reason to fear root canal treatment. It can be as comfortable as any other routine dental procedure. If you are experiencing toothaches, don't wait until the pain is unbearable or you have a more serious dental condition. A root canal can relieve the pain of infection and save your tooth.

Stay in control of your dental health. Schedule a complete examination with Dr. Whitaker today.