What is a Rubber Dam Used For?

We use a rubber dam in dentistry to isolate a tooth that needs treatment, usually for a root canal procedure. This thin sheet of latex helps our dentist perform the work more efficiently and is beneficial for our patients because it is more sterile than if not used.

Benefits of Using a Rubber Dam

When you need to get a root canal it’s usually because of an infection in one of your teeth, generally found in the pulp where the nerves and blood vessels are located. It is imperative that the area being treated is as sterile as possible and a rubber dam is ideal to isolate the tooth and protect it from bacteria that surrounds the site. To hold the rubber dam in place, we use a clamp that grabs the tooth tightly.

Using a rubber dam allows us to control the environment treated by keeping it dry and free of saliva that can contain bacteria.

When performing a root canal, we make a hole in your tooth to reach and expose the root. Any contaminated element from other areas of your mouth can enter the opening and cause problems with the root canal procedure. If not for the use of a rubber dam, you could get an infection.

Using a rubber dam is also helpful to keep the patient’s tongue and cheeks out of the way during the procedure. This makes the process more efficient because there is no need for constant suctioning.

The use of this contraption is widely viewed as necessary to achieve a successful root canal and should be a standard anytime the procedure is needed. Our dentists are trained and experienced using this technique which is recommended by the American Association of Endodontics and the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry. Using a rubber dam for a root canal treatment increases the chances that your tooth will survive for a longer time.