Teeth are made of three layers of tissue. The hard outside of your tooth is enamel. Below that is a tissue called dentin. Dentin protects the innermost layer of your tooth called the pulp. The pulp is made of soft tissues, blood vessels and nerves which reside in the root of your teeth. Each tooth in your mouth has at least one root and as many as four.
The canal inside these roots is where the pulp is found. When this interior tissue becomes diseased or infected, an abscess can develop. In some cases, root canal therapy is the only way to treat an abscessed tooth.
- Tender or swollen gums
- Abnormal sensitivity to hot or cold
- Discoloured tooth
- Throbbing pain
- Increasingly painful toothache
Abscess can be the result of poor oral hygiene, or trauma to the tooth which exposed the sensitive inner pulp tissue.
The procedure consists of cleaning out the diseased tissue through an opening in the top of the tooth. The inside of the root is cleaned and disinfected so that no bacteria or diseased tissue are left behind which can cause the infection to recur. Once the tooth has been sanitized, the cavity is filled and sealed. Because root canal therapy tends to weaken the structure of the tooth, the tooth may need to be fitted with a crown.
Contrary to rumors, root canals are not the horrific, painful procedures that everyone tends to imagine. Most patients who have required root canal therapy experience little or no discomfort. It can be a completely pain free procedure that leaves you with stronger, healthier teeth that look and feel as good as your natural teeth.
Root canals are performed at both our Windsor and Kingsville dental offices.