Do root canals involve drills?

A small dental drill is used in the initial stages of a root canal. The drill is used to open up access to the pulp chamber inside of the tooth. After the drill is used to make an opening, specialized files and dental tools are employed to scrape and clear away infected tissue.

A root canal treatment generally involves the removal and replacement of a tooth’s pulp. The pulp is soft tissue containing blood vessels, nerves and connective tissue. When the pulp is diseased or injured, the pulp tissue dies. If you don't remove it, your tooth gets infected and you could lose it. During a root canal, the dentist uses a drill to make an opening in the crown of the tooth so that the pulp can be removed and the root canal cleaned. The dentist then places medication into the pulp chamber to keep it safe from infection. 

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.