A root canal procedure eliminates infection and decay in the dental pulp, which is the soft inner tissue of the tooth. The dental pulp can become infected due to deep decay, repeated dental procedures on the tooth, or a crack or chip in the tooth. Symptoms of an inflamed dental pulp include pain when biting down, sensitivity to hot and cold, discoloration of the tooth, and swelling in the gums near the affected tooth. A root canal treatment involves removing the infected pulp and nerves of a decayed or infected tooth to save it.
A root canal procedure also referred to as endodontic therapy, is a dental procedure performed by a dentist to repair and save a damaged or infected tooth. Root canal treatments are performed when a tooth becomes infected due to severe tooth decay, large dental fillings, or trauma. During a root canal procedure, the nerve and pulp of the tooth are removed, and the inside of the tooth is cleaned and sealed.
A root canal treatment becomes necessary in the following situations:
During a root canal procedure, your dentist will create an opening in the tooth and remove the infected pulp tissue. Then, the dentist will clean and disinfect the inside of the canal. Finally, the dentist will fill the canal with a rubber-like substance called gutta-percha, which will prevent infection from recurring. As the last step, a crown will be placed over the tooth to protect it.
Following a root canal, you may have some swelling or sensitivity around your tooth. This is normal and should improve within a couple of days. It’s also normal to experience minor discomfort or sensitivity to biting. This can be helped with over-the-counter pain medication. You should never bite or chew on the treated tooth until it has completely healed.
To learn more about our dental services, call Lanham Smiles Family Dentistry at (301) 459-0914 or schedule an online appointment. You can also visit our dental office located at 9500 Annapolis Road, Suite C6, Lanham, MD 20706.