Is a badly decayed tooth making your life unpleasant? You may need a root canal treatment (RCT). The procedure removes the affected pulp and nerve pulp and cleans the inside of a tooth to prevent further decay and prevents the surrounding teeth from becoming infected.
The meaning of root canal
A root canal is the term dentists used to describe the natural cavity inside a tooth. The cavity is filled with a soft tissue called pulp. The nerve of the tooth lies inside the root canal. The function of the root canal is to provide the sensation of heat and cold. Other than that, it doesn’t play any role in the tooth’s growth and well-being. Its presence or absence does not affect the normal functioning of the tooth.
A tooth’s pulp and nerve can be damaged and infected by decay, large filings placed in the tooth, a cracked or chipped tooth, and repeated dental procedures.
Why the pulp needs to be removed
When a tooth’s pulp or nerve is damaged, it breaks down and the pulp chamber becomes a breeding ground for bacteria. The bacteria, along with decayed debris, cause an infection, resulting in an abscessed tooth. An abscess is a swollen area filled with pus. The swelling can spread to the face and neck. The infected root canal can also cause a loss of bone around the tooth’s root and create a hole at the side of the tooth causing the pus to drain into the gum and cheek.
An infected root canal can be extremely painful. If the infected pulp and nerve are not cleaned, the infection can spread to adjacent teeth. Therefore, damaged pulp and nerve should be removed before they can infect the other teeth.
Root canal procedure
A root canal treatment (RCT) must be performed by a professional in this field. Maiden Lane Dental are dentists who specialize in this branch of dentistry.
- Preparation: We will begin with an examination of the infected tooth. We will take an X-ray to get a clear picture of the root canal and determine if the surrounding bone is infected. Once we determine the tooth requires a root canal treatment (RCT), we will numb the tooth and the surrounding areas by administering a local anesthesia. If the nerve is completely damaged, anesthesia may not be required. We will then place a rubber dam, (a sheet of rubber), around the tooth to keep the area free of saliva.
- Removing the pulp and nerves: Next we drill an access hole into the tooth and remove the decayed pulp and nerve tissue using an instrument that is a specific electrical handpiece. The procedure is known as rotary endodontics. We flush away the debris periodically with water or sodium hypochlorite.
- Sealing the tooth: After cleaning the root canal thoroughly, the patient will leave and return in approximately a week. At that time the tooth will be sealed using a sealer paste and a material called gutta-percha, which is a compound made from rubber. If there is an infection during the waiting period, the patient will be treated with medication. If everything looks great the access hole will be filled.
- Final step: Once the root canal is completed, the dentist may recommend placing a dental crown, a crown and post, or another form of restoration on the tooth.
Root canal treatment (RCT) has 95 percent success rate. A tooth repaired with a root canal can last as long as other healthy teeth. When a crown or filling is placed within or over the tooth, there will be no visible signs that a root canal has ever been done.
Let the expert professional dentists at Maiden Lane Dental provide this treatment for you. We strive on all of our patients having a comfortable and stress-free experience. We are located in lower Manhattan and have been servicing the Financial District for many years. You may contact us by phone at 212-509-4585 or use our contact form. One of our staff technicians will be happy to assist you.
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Meet the Doctors
Lloyd Becker, DDS
Lloyd Becker, DDS brings a fresh new approach to the dental practice. He has a deep understanding of the people in the area. His continued and advanced education adds an added layer to Maiden Lane Dental.
Dr. Demetrious Tsiokos
Dr. Demetrious Tsiokos continues to administer the most advanced treatments in General Dentistry and Periodontics and Implantology.