If you have extensive tooth decay
and are experiencing some pain, the pulp layer, or nerve center, of your tooth
may be infected and requires immediate treatment. A spreading infection can
cause tooth loss, but root canal therapy can be very effective for removing the
infection and preserving the tooth. A root canal is performed under local
anesthesia so the patient experiences no pain or discomfort during the
The Root Canal Procedure
Before the procedure begins, Dr. Macaulay will numb the area with local anesthesia and place a rubber dam around the infected tooth. She will make an opening through the top of the tooth to get into the pulp chamber and then use a small dental file to clean out the infected tissue and shape the root canals in preparation of an anti-bacterial filling material. She will take x-rays throughout to ensure all of the infected pulp has been removed before placing a filling in the area to strengthen the tooth and that the filling material extends fully to the apex of each root tip. A restoration such as a crown is eventually placed over the tooth and also helps to strengthen the tooth structure.
Root Canal FAQs
Q: How does a tooth become infected?
A: Tooth decay or a fractured tooth can expose the pulp to bacteria which causes a serious infection.
Q: Do I really need treatment?
A: If you do not get treatment in a timely manner, the pus from the infected tooth can spread to the tip and into the jaw bone. Over time, this causes pressure and can be life threatening.
Q: What are the symptoms?
A: Common symptoms of a serious infection include extreme tooth sensitivity, swelling, pain, discomfort upon biting, and a consistent bad taste in the mouth.
Don’t lose a tooth to decay by avoiding root canal therapy. Learn more about the root canal procedure by scheduling your consultation in Valencia, CA with Dr. Macaulay today!