Endodontics is an area of dentistry that focuses on the central potion of the tooth called the pulp, as well as the nerves that keep teeth “alive” and healthy. Endodontists are concerned with the diagnosis and treatment of diseases and conditions that affect the pulp and the area surrounding it.
The most common endodontic procedure is a root canal, a procedure designed to remove the diseased pulp of a tooth, replace it with a filler material and then seal the tooth to prevent additional damage. Most root canals are followed by a crown to cover the tooth, provide additional protection and cover any discoloration that results when the living portion of the tooth is removed.
Yes; generally, it's always a better choice to preserve and maintain the tooth structure. When a tooth is extracted, the underlying bone will begin to disintegrate and neighboring teeth can start to lean in toward the gap left by the missing tooth. In time, their roots may become loose, causing them to fall out as well. Plus, maintaining a natural tooth helps preserve your normal bite mechanics and alignment of your jaw.
Most root canals are preceded by specific symptoms like:
Some patients have little or no symptoms until the tooth begins to break apart, which is why it's important to have regular dental checkups to check for signs of diseased pulp.
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