“Root canal” is the term used to describe the natural cavity within the center of the tooth. The pulp or pulp chamber is the soft area within the root canal. The tooth’s nerve lies within the root canal.
A root canal is a treatment used to repair and save a tooth that is badly decayed or becomes infected. During a root canal process, the nerve and pulp are removed and the inside of the tooth is cleaned and sealed. Without treatment, the tissue surrounding the tooth will become infected and abscesses may form.
The tooth is infected and dying; a root canal stops the infection. While the outer layers of the tooth are hard, the inner pulp is made of soft, living tissue. This tissue sometimes becomes infected, and begins to die. Once that occurs, treatment is needed right away — to stop the pain, control the infection, and keep it from spreading.
Root Canal Treatment Alleviates Pain. That’s right: Root canal treatment doesn’t cause pain — it relieves it. The procedure is relatively painless, despite the old stories you might have heard. In fact, it’s not unlike having a cavity treated, though it may take a little longer. So if you’re experiencing tooth pain, remember that the sooner you get it treated, the sooner you’ll be pain-free.
It won’t get better on its own, if you ignore some things, they will go away. Root canal problems aren’t one of those things. In some cases, if you wait long enough, the pain will go away. But that’s not a good sign, because the problem won’t go away on its own; it simply means that the nerves inside the tooth are all dead. The infection continues to smolder like glowing coals in a fire.
Root Canal Treatment Can Save the Tooth. If you neglect treatment of a root canal problem long enough, you’re at serious risk for losing the infected tooth. And tooth loss, once it starts, can bring on a host of other problems — like an enlarged risk of tooth decay on remaining teeth, as well as gum disease, bite problems and, as oral health problems escalate, even more tooth loss.