Root Canals: Why They’re Needed and How They’re Done

Your smile has genuine power. You may already know that smiling can help reduce stress, but this facial expression controls so much more. How much you smile can affect all sorts of things, from your health to your romantic future, which makes preventing oral cavities and other dental problems that could conceal your smile more important.

Researchers say that professional athletes who smiled more in photographs have longer life expectancies than those who didn’t. Another study discovered that women who smiled more in their college yearbook photos were more likely to have gotten married after five years. A separate study found out that “smilers” were less likely to have gotten divorced.

Need to Know About Root Canals

But maintaining your smile sometimes takes more than naturally whitening your teeth. You might need a root canal if your teeth have enough damage.

The Root of Root Canals

Although it has a scary reputation, root canals are dental procedures that could save and repair badly damaged teeth and keep your smile intact. According to dental experts at root canals are painless, thanks to local anesthetics that remove all sensation from the vicinity of the procedure.

Roots canals could become necessary if the nerve and pulp tissue within your teeth are severely damaged. Few things can cause this kind of damage. Deep decay from poor oral health or cavities can rot the tooth pulp if you don’t go to a dentist. If you get hit on the face, the trauma could crack or chip your tooth, exposing the pulp to bacteria which could infect it. If the trauma is severe, it could sever the blood vessels that keep the tooth pulp healthy and eventually lead to a root canal.

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Without a root canal, teeth with decayed pulp can cause the bone around the tip of the tooth’s root to decay as well. Swelling may occur as the infection spreads to the rest of your face and neck.

dental practitioners perform root canals

So how do dental practitioners perform root canals?

The 4 Steps of a Root Canal

It takes a dental professional four steps to complete a root canal. This usually takes two visits to the dental clinic. Although the tooth may feel sensitive after the procedure, the sensation usually goes away after one to two days.

The four steps of the procedure are as follows:

  1. The dentist numbs the tooth with a local anesthetic via injection. Once the anesthesia kicks in, the dentist places a small rubber sheet to keep the tooth isolated and dry while they work.
  2. Using a small drill, the dentist will bore a small hole on the top of your tooth to access the pulp inside. They’ll use other minuscule implements to remove the afflicted pulp from inside your tooth before using water to wash away any other debris.
  3. After the chamber is clean and dry, the dentist will use a rubbery material, gutta-percha, to fill the chamber.
  4. The dentist completes the procedure by installing a permanent crown or comparable appliance to the top of your tooth.

Once you know the procedure, root canals could become less intimidating. They’re just another way dentists protect and preserve your smile that, if the studies are correct, make your life better across the board.

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