When you open your mouth, you should see sparkling white, healthy teeth. Your teeth are critical components of your body that make it easier to eat, digest food, and speak—not to mention their aesthetic components that boost confidence every time you smile. But have you ever thought of what really makes up a tooth, the true inner and outer workings of a tooth. Or even a step further—what happens when your tooth isn’t healthy? Why is it so important to correct tooth decay and how does the office of Dr. Sarah Pitarra help you save your tooth from falling out or causing you excruciating pain? Our practice wants you to understand what’s really going on in your mouth from root to crown and how root canals are here to help you, not hurt you.
What makes up a tooth?
Teeth are composed of two vital parts: the crown (visible above the gum line) and the root (protected below the gum line). Both parts are equally important. The root is what anchors the rest of your tooth to your jaw within its socket. Tooth roots stay strong from constant blood flow and keep the pulp (nerve endings) in your tooth healthy.
The crown of your tooth is made up of enamel (most outer layer) and dentin (the bulk of your tooth). Believe it or not, enamel is the hardest substance that your human body creates. It’s designed to protect the inner workings of your teeth. When enamel starts to thin or become damaged from harmful substances, the dentin will also become sensitive. Tooth sensitivity is the first warning sign that your teeth are beginning to decay.
What happens when teeth decay?
Even with the best dental care at home, teeth can decay. If you notice any sensitivity to hot, cold, or extremely sweet foods this is a sign that your enamel may be wearing on your teeth. Following that, dangerous bacteria attack the dentin layer of your tooth. If you avoid visiting your dentist during the first signs of tooth decay, your tooth root could become infected—and trust us, you’ll feel it! Before you know it, you’ll be writing in dental pain. We can help you avoid that scenario altogether with a simple restorative procedure.
How can a root canal help?
Despite what you may have heard about root canals, they are designed to relieve tooth pain—not cause it. Contrary to the rumors, root canals are very similar to having a painless routine filling. You can expect a comfortable experience during and after your appointment with the help of anesthetics and safe pain medications.
During your procedure, Dr. Pitarra will remove the infected materials within your tooth—including the root. This is done by accessing the inside of your tooth with tiny files that can gently work within the intricate crevices of your tooth. All signs of infection and debris will be cleaned out.
After that, Dr. Pitarra will fill the inside of your tooth with a safe, rubber-like dental material (gutta percha) to avoid future infections from taking place. We will then seal your tooth and cap it with a dental crown to protect and re-stabilize it, gaining your natural tooth’s functionality and strength once again. An extra plus: you’ll never have to worry about tooth decay or cavities in that tooth anymore!
Ready to Revive a Dying Tooth?
Your dentist in Corpus Christi puts your wellbeing first. Contact our friendly office team to schedule an appointment to make sure your smile is healthy. If we spot any issues, we can address them immediately and develop the best treatment plan for you.