Tooth decay can actually be a serious condition if it is not treated in a timely manner. What starts off as a little spot of decay or a small cavity can turn into something that threatens the survival of the tooth and can cause a great deal of pain. When the nerve, or root, of the tooth is infected by debris or infection an Arlington Heights root canal is needed to clear up the problem. Our doctor at Family Dentistry of Arlington Heights will perform a root canal, also known as an endodontic treatment whenever the decay has infected the pulp within a tooth in order to clear the infection from the tooth to save it.
The pulp is the soft inner core of living tissue inside the tooth that is usually protected from decay causing debris, plaque, tartar and bacteria by a hard layer of dentin. The dentin, in turn, is protected above the gum line by the tooth’s outer shell of enamel and below the gum line by the cementum. The pulp can become infected when the decay on a tooth becomes so pronounced that it eats through the enamel and the protective dentin exposing the pulp, or when a tooth becomes cracked, chipped or severely pitted due to an injury that the plague and other debris gets inside. Swelling, tenderness, pain, an abscess or sensitivity to hot and cold are common symptoms that a problem exists. Root canals have a bad reputation as being very painful but advances in endodontic techniques and in anesthesia have made an Arlington Heights root canal virtually painless. First our doctor will numb the area with a topical anesthetic and then inject a local anesthetic into the nerves in the tooth and the surrounding area. After the anesthetic has numbed the entire area the patient may only feel a little pressure during the procedure but no pain.
During an Arlington Heights root canal our doctor will open the tooth to expose the roots and miniature tools are used to file away the pulp, nerve tissue and any decay. A mature tooth can live without its pulp by getting nutrients from the adjacent tissue. The canals left by the excavated roots are then filled with a rubber-like material to seal them and prevent re-infection. The tooth is then topped by a crown to help protect the remaining tooth material and to form a new chewing surface. As a result of the root canal the infected areas are gone, the pain and sensitivity are gone and the tooth has been saved. If you feel any symptoms of decay please let our doctor evaluate the tooth and correct any problems.
By Family Dentistry of Arlington Heights
March 26, 2019