What is a Root Canal?
When a tooth’s pulp becomes exposed to severe decay, bacteria, deep fractures from trauma/grinding, etc., the tooth may begin to die and develop an infection (abscess).
It might also become very painful. At this point, you only have two choices to treat the pain and infection. You can either remove your tooth or save it with a root canal treatment. A successful root canal treatment (also known as endodontic treatment) gives you the possibility to save your tooth rather than having it extracted. A root canal essentially is the removal of the damaged and infected tooth tissue from the tooth pulp chamber and roots. Your dentist will hollow out and clean the inner chambers and canals in the roots of the tooth. The dentist then fills the canals with a biocompatible material to prevent further infection.
Sometimes an antibiotic prescription is indicated prior to or concurrent with the treatment if the infection is causing severe pain and swelling. With routine check ups, your dentist will be able to avoid certain root canals for you by treating your cavities before they reach the tooth’s pulp and cause an infection.