Root Canal in Bedford

woman at the dentist A root canal in Bedford is used to save a severely damaged or decayed tooth from extraction. While this particular restorative procedure may have the reputation of being painful or something to dread, there is nothing to fear from a modern root canal. Keep reading to learn more about why we may recommend a root canal and what you can expect if you need to have one to rescue your tooth.

Anatomy of a Tooth

tooth anatomy

To understand the root canal, you need to know the different parts of a tooth. They include:

  • Enamel: The hard outer layer of the tooth which protects the soft underlayers
  • Dentin: The softer layer beneath the enamel
  • Pulp: The layer beneath the dentin and enamel (also called the “nerve”)

These three layers make up the tooth’s crown, or the visible part. The crown rests in the gum tissue and is held in place with a sturdy root.

When a Root Canal Is Necessary

professional womanYou need a root canal when tooth decay or damage has affected the very interior of the tooth, or the pulp. By the time it reaches this point, you are likely to feel it. A root canal is often caused by poor dental hygiene -- a cavity is ignored and allowed to worsen, with the tooth decay gradually eating through the enamel and reaching the interior of the tooth.

You may not always notice when you need a root canal. Routine visits to the dentist are important to help prevent them and to provide prompt treatment if a root canal is required.

Some of the warning signs of a root canal include:

  • A persistent toothache
  • Lingering sensitivity to heat, cold, and air
  • A gray or black tooth
  • A pimple-like bump on the gums below the tooth
  • Pain in the jaw
  • Difficulty opening/closing the mouth
  • Swelling

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms or believe you need a root canal for some other reason, do not hesitate to get in touch with your dentist. Prompt treatment is vital for your oral and overall health.

What Happens In a Root Canal

A root canal is performed under local anesthesia, which numbs the jaw. Additional sedation can be provided as needed for your comfort. We will only begin working once we are sure you are completely comfortable. We promise you won’t feel a thing!

The steps of a root canal include:

  • A small access hole is created in the tooth
  • All infected tissue is removed from the interior
  • The root canals are cleaned, measured and reshaped
  • A biocompatible material known as gutta percha refills the tooth
  • A temporary/permanent filling or crown is placed in the same or a follow-up visit

The last few steps depend on the severity of the infection. Many root canals are completed over the course of 2 visits to the office. An antibiotic may be placed directly to the infection to help speed healing. Once the procedure is complete, the tooth can stay healthy and secure in the smile for years and years to come!

Get In Touch Today!

If you have a severely aching or damaged tooth, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with Peaks View Dental. Prompt treatment is necessary to save your smile! Go ahead and request an appointment today.