Did you know that a natural tooth can remain in place even after the dental nerve has been removed? This is great news, since it is common for the dental nerve to abscess or become infected while the rest of the tooth is still able to play an important role in your overall oral health. In the case of a bad or deteriorating dental nerve, Dr. Gapuz often recommends the removal of the nerve tissue in order to preserve the rest of the valuable tooth structure. This procedure is known as root canal therapy.
Why Choose Root Canal Therapy?
If you have experienced the following signs or symptoms of a dying dental nerve, but want to preserve as many of your natural teeth as possible, then the root canal procedure may be right for you:
- Severe toothache in response to biting pressure
- Lingering sensitivity, pain, or discomfort after exposure to cold or hot temperatures
- Swelling, tenderness, or recurrent pimple on the gums
- Spontaneous toothache without stimulation from temperature or pressure
- Darkening or discoloration of the tooth
- A deeply decayed or cracked tooth
These signs and symptoms typically indicate that the dental nerve within the tooth has been irreversibly damaged or infected. The discomfort can sometimes be managed with the help of antibiotics or pain medications, but the infection will continue to strain your immune system until the nerve has been removed. Root canal therapy is the most conservative way to eliminate the infection while keeping the rest of the tooth intact. The alternative to this procedure is a complete tooth extraction.
An Overview of the Root Canal Procedure
The removal of the dental nerve is a delicate and precise procedure that is performed in the dental office under local anesthesia. When the tooth and the surrounding tissue have been numbed, small instruments are used to clean and sterilize the interior of the tooth through a small opening in the biting surface. Once the infected nerve tissue has been removed and the interior of the tooth has been sterilized, the vacant space within the tooth is filled with a permanent filling material.
To prevent the tooth from becoming brittle after the loss of its nerve tissue, it is often necessary to reinforce the tooth with a dental crown.
Learn more about the benefits of root canal therapy by contacting our office and arranging a consultation today.