This procedure is necessary when the cavity has invaded the nerve chamber located in the middle of the tooth or when the nerve dies from trauma. A cavity occurs after bacteria have slowly eaten through the tooth, exposing its hollow, sterile center environment which houses the nerves and blood vessels. When the cavity reaches this area, it contaminates the entire tooth, often times spreading all the way down the root into the bone. As the bacteria grow, it turns into an infection that causes swelling around the tooth and gums. The swelling places pressure on the bone to expand which causes a deep achy pain.
A root canal procedure disinfects the tooth again by removing the bacteria and any contaminated tissue. Then a filling material is placed into the canals to seal the tooth and a restoration is placed to repair the cavity. A crown is usually recommended to provide support for the tooth which was weakened by the deep cavity.