There are times when a tooth’s nerve has been irreversibly affected by decay or some other insult and needs to be removed. This procedure is referred to as a root canal. A root canal is used to save a tooth that otherwise would die and need extraction. We always want to try and save your natural teeth and root canal therapy allows us to do this.
Root canal therapy is done in one or multiple visits. After the tooth is anesthetized and isolated, it is thoroughly cleaned through an opening in the chewing surface of the tooth. The openings of the canals (nerve tubes that run inside the roots) are located, cleaned, and irrigated. Once the canals are cleaned and shaped, they are sealed and filled. The root canal treated tooth typically needs to have a crown placed due to the increased risk of tooth fracture. The crown also needed to restore function to the tooth. This is a procedure routinely done by general dentists including Dr. Evans, but may be referred to a specialist called an endodontist. Dr. Evans will always try to care for your needs in office, but may recommend referral to an endodontist in certain cases.
Indications for root canal therapy:
Decay that has reached the pulp of the tooth
Severe cracks or fractures of teeth
Teeth that have undergone multiple dental procedures
Infected or abscessed teeth
Root canals are an effective and successful treatment for those teeth with the above indications. Some teeth do not respond to root canal therapy and may need retreatment or even extraction.