Root Canal Treatment or Endodontics
Endodontics refers to the specialty field of dentistry that involves treatment of the nerve of the tooth.
Inside the center of the tooth is a collection of nerves, blood vessels, and tissues called the pulp. A root canal removes the infected or dead pulp from the tooth and then fills and seals the area.
Dr. Othman performs root canals on premolars and anterior teeth. Root canal treatment for other teeth will be referred to an endodontist that he trusts.
When is a Root Canal Performed?
If a cavity is left untreated, the tooth may decay and allow bacteria to infect the pulp of the tooth. The infected pulp will either cause the tissue to become inflamed or decay, and must be removed through a root canal procedure.
There is often significant pain associated with the pulp of the tooth becoming infected, so if you are experiencing seemingly random pain or severe sensitivity to hot and cold that lingers, you may have an infected pulp. Even in the case of a tooth with dead or decaying pulp, there will be pain when you try to chew or assert pressure on the tooth.
An abscess occurs when the pulp of the tooth dies and a pus pocket accumulates around the area of infected tissue. The pus pocket may protrude from the gum like a small pimple and cause a bad taste in the mouth.
If left untreated, an abscess could infect the bone and tissue around the tooth and continue into the blood stream, resulting in further, and sometimes fatal, illness. A root canal must be performed to completely cleanse the site of bacteria and dead tissue.
Any traumatic incident around the tooth could cause the nerve to be severed from the underlying blood supply and die. A root canal will be performed to clear out any dead tissue and prevent infection.
- Local anesthesia is used to numb the area and to provide a comfortable, painless experience during the procedure
- Drill is used to reach the nerve of the tooth
- Files are inserted into the chamber that houses the nerve and the dead nerve material is cleaned out
- Nerve chamber is disinfected to kill any remaining bacteria
- Chamber is filled and sealed to prevent any further decay