Root Canal Therapy
Root canal therapy, also known as endodontic therapy, is a dental treatment for removing an infection from inside of the tooth. It can also protect the tooth from future infections. Inside the tooth is a hollow centre containing a ‘pulp’. The pulp is a sensitive tissue made up of blood vessels and nerves that provides oxygen, nutrients and sensation to the tooth. The pulp is found all through the tooth and the space where the pulp sits in the root is called the root canal.Root canal treatment is a dental procedure that replaces damaged or infected pulp in the tooth’s root canal with a filling material.
Myths and facts about root canal therapy:
Has your dentist or endodontist told you that you need root canal treatment? If so, you’re not alone. Millions of teeth are treated and saved each year with the root canal or endodontic treatment. This page explains root canal treatment in detail and how it can relieve your tooth pain and save your smile.
When do you need root canal treatment?
Endodontic treatment is necessary when the pulp, the soft tissue inside the root canal, becomes inflamed or infected. The inflammation or infection can have a variety of causes: deep decay repeated dental procedures on the tooth or a crack or chip in the tooth. In addition, an injury to a tooth may cause pulp damage even if the tooth has no visible chips or cracks. If pulp inflammation or infection is left untreated, it can cause pain or lead to an abscess.
Will I feel pain during or after the procedure?
Many endodontic procedures are performed to relieve the pain of toothaches caused by pulp inflammation or infection. With modern techniques and anaesthetics, most patients report that they are comfortable during the procedure. We ensure that our patients get a painless root canal treatment. For the first few days after the treatment, your tooth may feel little unusual or sensitive, especially if there was pain or infection before the procedure. This discomfort can be relieved with over-the-counter or prescription medications. Follow your endodontist’s instructions carefully.
Precautions during and after a root canal therapy:
For the first few days following the completion of a root canal, the tooth may feel sensitive due to natural tissue inflammation, especially if there was pain or infection before the procedure. Most patients can return to their normal activities the next day. But until your root canal procedure is completely finished – that is to say, the permanent filling is in place and/or the crown is placed, it’s wise to minimize chewing on the tooth under repair. This step will help avoid recontamination of the interior of the tooth and may prevent a fragile tooth from breaking before the tooth can be fully restored. As far as oral health care is concerned, brushing and flossing can be done as usual. However, if you have severe pain or pressure or pain that lasts more than a few days, consult your endodontist.
Benefits of saving your natural tooth with root canal treatment
There are many clinical reasons for needing root canal treatment but there are also countless practical reasons why saving the natural tooth is a wise choice. Endodontic treatment helps you maintain your natural smile, eat the food you love and limits the need for ongoing dental work. Loss of your natural teeth may have many consequences and to replace the diseased tooth, will add up to your expenses. However, with proper care and cost-effective root canal treatment, most teeth that have had root canal treatment can last a lifetime.