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Root Canal

Reluctant to visit the dentist? Don’t let an infected tooth cost you more than it should. A root canal can save your natural tooth. Though a root canal may sound daunting, it is a common procedure that can restore an infected tooth. A root canal is what our dentists can perform as therapy for your tooth, which involves cleaning and filling the infected area to resolve the pain and discomfort that infected teeth can cause.
An infographic reveals the inside of a tooth and gums, which also shows root canal nerve endings.

Tooth Anatomy

Your teeth are covered with hard enamel. Inside each tooth is a soft tissue called pulp, which is connected to nerves and blood vessels that once helped your tooth grow. Once a tooth matures, it no longer needs the pulp. If the pulp becomes infected due to tooth decay, you will need a root canal. Thankfully, some dentists (called an endodontist) specialize in restoring teeth in this way.

People who have tooth pain, darkening gums, or swollen gums may have an infected tooth. If you’ve recently chipped or broken a tooth, that tooth is more susceptible to infection. Our dentists can help you identify what may be wrong with your tooth and determine if you need a root canal.

Root Canal Therapy

Having a root canal can save you from getting a tooth abscess or losing a tooth altogether. This procedure relieves any pain or discomfort caused by an infected tooth. A root canal doesn’t take long and it’s complete in only one to two appointments. 

Before your root canal, you’ll want to know what to expect. The following are the steps to a root canal procedure: 

  1. One of our dentists will provide anesthetic to the area around the infected tooth.
  2. Once your mouth is numb, the dentist will open the crown of your tooth in order to reach the infected pulp inside.
  3. Your dentist will remove the pulp and disinfect the tooth’s root canals.
  4. After cleaning and shaping the inside of the tooth, the dentist will insert a filling into the space left behind by the pulp.
  5. The dentist will seal your tooth. This may be done with a temporary filling.
  6. Depending on the location of the tooth, your dentist may restore your tooth with a crown. A crown will protect the interior of the tooth, allow you to use your tooth normally, and give your tooth a natural appearance.
To prevent the further spread of infection, we need to resolve any lingering issues. So, if for any reason you continue to experience problems such as pain with your tooth, please contact our Springfield, MO office and schedule a followup appointment.
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