Often patients are not aware that they need a root canal, that’s important because most patients will say that they don’t have any pain so they don’t need a root canal. But, again, generally speaking a patient will need a root canal when the nerve tissue is infected or damaged beyond repair.
So if some sort of trauma was done to the tooth, a tooth was knocked and the nerve slowly died, that’s when a root canal would be indicated. A root canal is basically accessing the center of the tooth where the blood supply and the nerves are housed.
So once you access the center of the tooth you have exposed the nerve, the nerve is removed. The canals are basically, again, they house the nerves and the blood supply to the tooth within the roots of the tooth. So basically, you’ve got a hollow chamber within the root of the tooth and so you shave those canals, you clean them thoroughly and then you ultimately place a filling inside those canals and that would be a root canal.