What Is A Root Canal

What Is A Root Canal

As an Aurora, CO dentist, I have found that root canals are probably the most misunderstood ad most feared procedures in dentistry.  But how founded are these fears?  Is a root canal painful?  Does it involve removing your roots?  Aurora, CO dentist answers your questions about root canals!


When a tooth needs a root canal it is because the nerve in the tooth has become irreversibly inflamed or has died atogether due to cracks, trauma or cavities.  When you hear someone (usually comedians) say “That hurts like a root canal!” it’s really misleading, because root canals do not have to hurt.  We believe in practicing painless dentistry as an aurora dentist as often as possible (in fact, we’re one of the few sedation dentists in aurora, CO…but we’ll cover that more here).  In some offices root canals may be very painful, but usually the pain that is associated with a root canal is the pain leading up to the diagnosis (the toothache that brought you in to see us in the first place!), not the procedure itself.  In fact, most patients are surprised to learn that teeth usually feel quite a bit better after root canals are completed. 


So, how is a root canal performed?  As dentists in Aurora, CO, this procedure involves drilling a small hole in the top of the tooth and then cleaning out all of the infection and then putting some medicine and a soft, soothing filling into the tooth to protect it against future infection.  Because teeth can become brittle over time following a root canal, usually root canals are followed by a crown on a tooth.  A crown is like a gold or a porcelain hat that fits over the tooth and holds it together to strengthen it against breaking in the future.  As I said, a root canal is almost always followed by a crown (not always), but if you have been told you need a crown, that does not necessarily mean that you also need a root canal.  So crowns usually follow root canals, but you don’t have to have a root canal in order to get a crown.  Make sense?  Think of it this way:  When you go to the movie theater, you usually eat popcorn, but just because you’re eating popcorn doesn’t mean you’re going to the movies!   A tooth can be crowned without ever needing a root canal – in fact, that’s often the reason we do crowns—to avoid having to do a root canal later on!


So, when you have a root canal performed by an Aurora Dentist, it doesn’t mean that you are going to have your root removed, or that you’re having your root taken out.  Root canals are not considered surgeries, and the recovery can be very painless dentistry. 


If you’re wondering if you need a root canal, we offer free consultations and second opinions (or just discussions about your questions) any time, at no charge.  You can call us at 303-693-1215 or fill out our contact form to schedule an appointment with an Aurora, CO dentist and find out more about root canals and how they work!