Protect and keep an infected or dying tooth.
- Infected or dying tooth due to decay or injury
- Chronic tooth pain from contact with hot and cold liquids
- Pain from pressure or biting down
- Risk of infection spreading
Root canal therapy is the removal of the infected pulp of the tooth.
Inside each tooth is a pulp chamber that contains the nerves and blood supply for the tooth. When the pulp becomes infected due to decay or injury to the tooth, the pulp must be removed from the center of the tooth and the canals of each root. After Dr. Pooley removes the pulp, the remaining chamber is then filled with a rubber-based material to seal it off.
All teeth that have had root canal therapy must be protected with a crown (see crown section.) Teeth that have had the pulp removed become brittle and, therefore, are more susceptible to fracture.
Root canal therapy is an excellent way to save a tooth that would otherwise die and need to be removed.
If a tooth is infected, there are no disadvantages to root canal therapy. On rare occasions, however, root canal therapy may need to be redone to ensure that all of the infection has been removed.
The only alternative is to remove the infected tooth. However, this will require a dental implant, bridge or partial denture to fill the empty space and prevent the surrounding teeth from shifting. These solutions will ultimately cost more than the root canal therapy, and they will never equal the quality of keeping your natural tooth.