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A root canal procedure is something that we do to a tooth that has had the nerve either die off

or begin to die off.  The procedure involves placing a rubber dam around the tooth so that when

the nerve chamber of the tooth is opened up, that no bacteria from the saliva in the mouth gets back

into the tooth.  We use files to hollow out the tooth all the way down to the tip of the roots.  The inside

of the tooth is sterilized and filled with a rubbery filling material called gutta percha.  A silver or white

filling is placed over this material to restore the tooth.  Often times a tooth that has had a root canal treatment will require a crown to be placed on the tooth for the final restoration.  The reason for this

is that the tooth has been hollowed out greatly and no longer has a blood supply, so it becomes

brittle and can fracture.   The crown surrounds the tooth and helps prevent fracturing.