Root canal infection is a painful condition that occurs when bacteria enter a tooth. Often, root canal infection occurs because a tooth has been injured or decayed, and abscess forms. However, sometimes root canal infection occurs without the presence of any noticeable symptoms.
The cause of root canal infection is bacteria. This bacteria accumulates within the tooth’s pulp chamber, which is the tooth’s interior and contains the pulp. The pulp is the soft tissue inside the tooth that contains nerves, blood vessels, and connective tissue.
The bacteria in the pulp chamber can become infected due to dental decay or injury. Once the bacteria is inside the tooth, it can begin to break down the tissues and nerves. As the tissues and nerves are destroyed, the tooth can become extremely painful. As the infection progresses, it can lead to the formation of an abscess. An abscess is a pus pocket that forms near the roots of the tooth.
Root canal infections are painful and often cause swelling, tenderness, and sensitivity to hot and cold. If you have a root canal infection, you may also notice dark, red, or swollen gums. The other symptoms of root canal infection include the following:
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, you should contact your dentist immediately.
The root canal treatment procedure is typically performed over one to two dental visits. Your dentist or endodontist will first take X-rays to determine the extent of the damage and infection before he or she will begin.
During root canal treatment, your dentist or endodontist will drill a hole into the tooth to access the infected pulp and nerve. The infected nerve and pulp will be removed, and the canal will be cleaned and shaped. Once the tooth is cleaned and shaped, a rubber-like material called gutta percha will be filled in the tooth’s canal to seal it. Once the root canal treatment is complete, your dentist or endodontist will recommend that you treat the tooth with a dental crown to restore the tooth's strength and health.
Our dentists at Rand Center for Dentistry in Flanders, NJ, provide the best dentistry solutions and the best dental care for patients. To learn more and schedule an appointment, call (973) 370-8917.