Having a root canal procedure performed on your tooth might not be the most pleasant experience you will encounter in life, but it is often the only way a dentist can save a tooth. Root canals are necessary when the pulp inside a tooth's root canals becomes infected. While some dentists perform root canals in just one visit, many now require two visits to complete one root canal procedure.
The first visit
When you visit a dentist for the first part of a root canal, the dentist will complete several key steps. The first step typically involves taking x-rays. X-rays offer a great way for the dentist to see how many canals the tooth has, and x-rays help the dentist see the condition of each canal.
After that, the dentist will numb your mouth and begin performing the procedure. A root canal procedure generally requires the dentist to shave off part of your tooth in order to access the canals. When the dentist can access the canals, he or she will clean them out. The goal is to remove all the tooth pulp from the canals, and this can be tricky because the canals are hidden away under the tooth.
When the dentist completes this step, he or she will likely place a temporary crown over the tooth to protect it until the next visit.
The second visit
The second visit is used for several key purposes, too, and it often begins once again with x-rays. Dentists take x-rays again to ensure that the canals are completely clean. If the dentist missed any of the pulp during the first visit, the second visit gives the dentist a chance to remove it, and this is very important during a root canal.
If the canals look good, the dentist will fill them with a material that hardens and fills up the canals completely. Finally, the dentist will place a crown over the tooth to protect it.
The benefits of two-visit root canals
There are several key benefits of having a root canal done in two visits instead of one. The first benefit is that you will not have to sit in a dentist chair for several hours all at once. You can divide this time up between two visits. The second benefit is that doing a root canal in two visits gives a dentist a better chance of completely cleaning out the canals before finishing up the process. This is beneficial because it gives you a better chance of never experiencing problems with that particular tooth again.
If you need to have a root canal completed on a tooth, don't put it off. Dentists perform root canals all the time, and they are not as bad as you might think. To learn more about root canals, contact a dental clinic in your city today.