Root Canal Treatment is a treatment designed to repair and save a badly damaged or infected tooth instead of removing it. The term “root canal” comes from cleaning of the canals inside a tooth’s root. In very simple terms, a root canal removes infected tissue (pulp) from the roots of the tooth beneath the gums.
Root canal treatment is necessary when the pulp (soft tissue inside your teeth containing blood vessels, nerves and connective tissue) becomes inflamed or diseased. If the infected pulp is not removed, pain and swelling can result, and your tooth may have to be removed. Causes of an infected pulp could include: a deep cavity, repeated dental procedures, a cracked or broken tooth, or injury to the tooth.
Decades ago, root canal treatments were often painful. However, with dental advances and local anesthetics, most people have little if any pain with a root canal. In fact, the purpose of a root canal is to relieve pain, not cause it! Best of all, it can save your tooth and your smile.