We all try to look after our teeth by brushing and flossing and visiting our dentist, but some people are better at it than others. Those who fall back on their brushing and avoid the dentist may find that they have a mouth full of cavities, and soon after they're in enough pain for their dentist to recommend a root canal. If you've been told you need a root canal, this article will help you understand what's happening in your mouth and what the procedure will entail.
Most people assume that their teeth are solid all the way though, but they're actually not. Teeth consist of an outer enamel shell which protects the soft tissue in the center which is made up of nerves and blood vessels. This pulpy center is sealed off from the rest of your mouth unless a cavity manages to penetrate all the way through your enamel. When this happens a bacterial infection may take hold in your tooth pulp which will send you to a dentist to get rid of the pain.
When an infection has penetrated a tooth, your dentist will likely suggest a root canal, which is the most common procedure for dealing with infected tooth pulp. In a root canal procedure, the dentist drills into your tooth and extracts the infected pulp as well as the nerves that connect it to your jaw. By using files and irrigation, all infected matter is scooped out and disposed of and the space is filled up with dental cement. The tooth remains in place, but is now dead.
Patients who receive root canals also receive numbing agents to make sure they cannot feel any pain during the procedure. However, some patients who are squeamish about the surgery may opt for their dental office to put them to sleep. The longer you wait to get your root canal the more involved the surgery will be. Eventually there may not even be enough tooth left to save and the infection may spread into the bone of your jaw.
Contrary to popular belief, there are alternatives to root canal therapy. A naturopath who is opposed to drug treatments may choose to have the tooth extracted instead and replaced by an implant that is impervious to further infection. Another option is a brand new procedure called 3Mix-MP that involves the application of an antibacterial mixture and is still in the experimental phase.
We would like to thank our fellow dental friends at Sunrise Kids Dental for the root canal information you just read. If you need dental treatment or preventative care in the City of Toronto, give them a call at 647-350-7562 or visit their website at Sunrisekidsdental.com.