Endodontic therapy is the area of dentistry most commonly referred to as root canal treatment. This beneficial procedure is probably one of the most misunderstood in the field of dentistry, with many people experiencing anxiety at the mere thought of having a root canal. This form of treatment from your endodontics specialist in the Scarborough area, however, may be necessary if the inner part of the tooth, the pulp, has become infected or damaged.
How dental pulp becomes damaged
Beneath the enamel, which is the part of the tooth we see, lies dentin. Further inside the tooth is a chamber filled with pulp, nerves, and blood vessels. Ideally, the two layers of tooth structure outside of the pulp chamber will protect this soft tissue. However, there are ways in which pulp does sustain damage:
- Pulp most commonly becomes infected when a cavity remains untreated. Cavities are progressive, caused by living microorganisms that break down tooth structure. If a cavity is not treated, bacteria will continue to move inward toward pulp tissue.
- Cracks in teeth in the absence of a cavity also open the inner parts of the tooth to bacterial invasion. Bacteria are so tiny that they need only a microscopic opening to move in. Tooth fractures may occur as a result of tooth grinding, biting on hard objects, or cracked fillings.
- Cavities may develop beneath a large filling or old dental restoration in some cases. Though the materials used to repair teeth cannot develop cavities, the underlying tooth structure is still at risk. If plaque forms around a restoration, bacteria may break down tooth structure quickly.
Why we remove damaged pulp
Once pulp becomes damaged or infected, this tissue does not heal. As infection progresses, inflammation at the core of the tooth develops and pressure builds up. The nerve, which sits within dental pulp, becomes highly sensitive, sending strong pain signals at the slightest contact with hot or cold substances. The danger of infection within pulp tissue is that it can continue to spread into surrounding tissues, causing the formation of an abscess.
Root canal treatment is the dental procedure with a reputation. People commonly, and mistakenly, think that having a root canal will be painful. In fact, the procedure itself is very tolerable, feeling like nothing more than a dental filling or other dental procedure. Before proceeding with the removal of damaged tooth structure, we apply numbing medication to ensure no discomfort occurs. Using the most up to date technique, we complete root canal therapy quickly and with great precision.
Keep your smile healthy and pain-free. Contact the Esquire Dental Centres office nearest you for your consultation.
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