Sometimes a tooth becomes infected. This often happens when a tooth becomes damaged from a traumatic injury, when a deep cavity has gone untreated, or when a cracked or broken tooth has not been fixed. When this infection reaches the pulp area of the tooth – the nerve cell center of the tooth – it causes pain and swelling.
A root canal is often the best approach to preserving the affected tooth. Also known as endodontic treatment, this process involves:
- A gentle removal of the affected nerve, and a thorough disinfection of the tooth’s interior, then sealing the space where the nerve was removed.
- Filling the tooth with a composite material to stabilize it internally.
- Preparing the tooth for a crown to stabilize it long term.