Inside our teeth, under the hard enamel and dentin layers, there is a soft tissue layer called the pulp. It contains nerves, blood vessels and connective tissue. If it gets injured or infected, the nerves die and the tooth may become infected and painful. Root canals are meant to save the damaged teeth. The dentist removes the infected nerve tissue and then places a soft filling material inside the root, allowing any infection to heal. Following this, the tooth is sealed permanently with a filling and typically a crown is placed over the tooth to protect it and restore it back to function.