A lot of people get nervous at the idea of a root canal, but it's really not as bad as it's made out to be. The root canal procedure can potentially save a tooth, preventing you from needing to get a dental implant, bridge, or partial dentures later on to replace that tooth. This saves you time and money, and ultimately is more natural for your body than having an artificial replacement put in. So if you're worried about how your first root canal will go, here's a rundown of what you can expect.
As with any major dental procedure, the first thing your dentist will do before beginning a root canal is to numb your tooth and gums. This is accomplished with a combination of topical pain relievers (like Orajel) followed by Novocaine that's injected directly into the gums. This will completely numb the area and you won't be able to feel anything as your dentist is working on your tooth.
Next up comes the root canal itself. Your dentist will begin by drilling the tooth wherever the damage is, or if there isn't external damage, from the top of the tooth. They'll remove any damaged portions of the tooth as they drill into it. Once they reach the inner pulp of the tooth, it's time to start a micro drilling process.
Dentists use a tiny drill to remove the inner pulp of your tooth, going all the way down into the root of the tooth. This is necessary because typically when a root canal is called for, this part of the tooth is damaged or rotting and will continue to contaminate the tooth until it's removed. After the tiny drill has removed everything deep inside the tooth and the remainder of pulp and dentin has been removed, it's time to move on to the final step.
The filling is injected into the narrower parts of the tooth at the root, all the way up into the open cavity of the tooth. Once this filling fully hardens, your dentist will seal off the entrance point to the tooth with more filling and will shape and file it down until it matches your surrounding teeth.
In some cases, after the filling is complete, a dental crown is necessary. This is only done if the tooth is too structurally weak to support your daily needs on its own. A crown will be placed over the tooth and will encapsulate it, ensuring that your tooth remains healthy and safe.
For more information, contact your family dentistry provider today.