Root Canals in Prairieville, LA
The words “Root Canal” strike fear into the hearts of many people and conjure up images of movie quality nightmarish treatment. With today’s modern dental techniques, you can have this treatment performed painlessly and in only one visit. For those patients who are anxious, see our Sedation Dentistry page to see how we can make your visit easier and more relaxing for you.
Why Would I Need a Root Canal?
A root canal is the preferred treatment once the nerve of a tooth becomes irreversibly damaged due to trauma, repeated chemical or mechanical injury, or a cavity that has spread to the pulp of the tooth. Once the nerve becomes irreversibly damaged there are only two ways to treat the tooth: root canal therapy or extraction. Teeth cannot heal themselves, and if left untreated will form a painful dental abscess that is often accompanied by swelling. Left untreated, this can become a life-threatening situation.
What’s Involved in Having a Root Canal Done?
Teeth have three layers that compose the crown portion of a tooth, and that you see in the mouth. Enamel is the outermost layer, dentin is the middle layer, and the nerve (or dental pulp) is in the center.
The nerve of the tooth also runs through the center of the roots of a tooth, much like bone marrow runs through the middle of bone. The nerve consists of two parts: the upper part is called the pulp chamber and the part that runs through the middle of the roots is called the canal (hence the term “root canal).
After numbing the tooth, a small hole is made to access the top of the nerve and small, precise instruments are used to remove the infected tissue within the center of the roots (the canals). Once the infected tissue is removed, the canals are disinfected and the canal spaces are filled with a sterile material to seal the canals. It’s important to note that any back tooth that has had a root canal should be crowned to protect the now structurally compromised tooth structure.
Will it Hurt?
Having a root canal done is the same as any other dental procedure. Once you are numbed with local anesthesia, you won’t feel anything. Some people experience minimal post-operative discomfort, but nothing that can’t be relieved with over the counter pain medication.