What exactly is a root canal?
“Root canal” is the term used to describe the natural space found within the center of all of your tooth roots. The soft material that is located within the root canal space is called the pulp. The tooth’s nerve and blood supply are contained within the pulp.
A root canal procedure is a treatment used to save a tooth which is infected by bacteria or is badly broken down. Without treatment, an infected or damaged tooth can cause the surrounding bone and tissues to become infected as well, potentially leading to an abscess. Dental abscesses can spread throughout the face, and were one of the leading causes of death in the 1800′s.
During a root canal treatment, the infected nerve and the pulp are removed. The inside of your tooth roots are then cleaned and sterilized. Then the tooth is sealed. A crown restoration is often required to properly restore the damaged tooth to full function.
Is a root canal painful?
Many people fear root canal treatment. That’s because, in the past, dental freezing was not as effective as it is today.
The good news is, anesthetic techniques are continually improving and today’s medications are longer lasting and more effective than they were in the past. While no one can guarantee pain free dentistry, today’s pain-killers, freezing techniques, and dental sedation options can help towards a more comfortable root canal treatment.
Not all nerves are created equal
Some people have their dental nerves located in a different anatomical position compared to the rest of the population. For this select group of people, traditional freezing techniques may not be effective.
- may be hard to freeze and may never feel totally comfortable with traditional anesthetic methods
- find that freezing does not last, so they require higher dosages, or more frequent dosages than traditional freezing
- often find their cheeks and face are very sore for long time periods after any procedures because of the larger dosages of traditional freezing
- find that freezing takes a long time to take effect or to wear off.
If you are difficult to freeze, or have never felt very numb during dental treatment in the past, let Dr. Lachman know so that he can use different methods to help you be more comfortable.
If you would like to learn more about root canal treatment, please schedule a consultation.
Dr. Lachman and his team will work with you to help reduce your nervousness or your fear surrounding a root canal or any other dental procedures you may require.