A root canal is a dental procedure that is designed to treat a tooth whose inner dental pulp is infected or injured, so that it doesn't die.
Each of our teeth contains a long, thin strand of dental pulp that extends down to the tooth’s root. This pulp provides the tooth with nutrients and nerves. If the pulp becomes damaged, the tooth’s nerves die. The surrounding tissue can become infected as well, causing the tooth to die.
Root canals clean the inside of the impaired tooth, after which it is sealed to preserve functionality.
During the procedure, a gap is drilled into the tooth’s crown and pulp chamber, diseased pulp is reshaped or removed, and the tooth is permanently sealed with a gold, porcelain, or tooth-colored inlay/onlay or crown.