Endodontic (Root Canal) Therapy
When a tooth is decayed or cracked, bacteria can get to the pulp. The bacterial by-products irritate and inflame the pulp. When this happens, it’s harder for blood to flow to the tissue, and the resulting pressure creates nerve pain inside your tooth. Pain can also result from pressure caused by bacterial growth and infection in a tooth. The Doctors at Prescott Dentistry are sympathetic to fears of pain and will do everything necessary to make it a comfortable experience.
Endodontic therapy has three purposes: First, stop the toothache. Second, prevent bacteria and pain from spreading into the jaw. Finally, maintain the integrity of the original tooth and root to prevent tooth loss. There are several steps in the process of endodontic treatment that the doctors at Prescott Dentistry will perform to save your tooth. First, a local anesthetic is usually given so that you will be more comfortable. In order to keep your tooth clean and dry the dentist will use some form of isolation. A small opening is made through the biting surface of the tooth to access the tooth “pulp”. The pulp is soft tissue inside the tooth that contains blood vessels and nerves. The infected tissue and/or bacteria are then removed carefully from the root canal(s). Each root canal is gently cleaned and shaped to allow it to be filled. Natural antibacterials may be placed in the pulp chamber and root canal(s) to help eliminate bacteria. You may also be prescribed antibiotics if there are signs of infection that has spread beyond the end of the root(s). The root canals(s) are then filled, usually with an inert, natural rubber-like material called gutta-parcha made from various tropical trees. This material is very bio-compatible and seldom causes any reaction. In the final step, the tooth will be restored with a protective onlay or filling to reinforce it and improve its appearance.