Root Canal Therapy or Endodontic treatment is used to salvage teeth when the pulp has become infected, causing discomfort and tooth aches. The dental pulp of the tooth is located at the root of the tooth and is where the blood and nerves of the tooth are housed, essential for its development. However, once the tooth is fully grown it can function normally and in a healthy manner without the pulp. If an infection of the pulp is left untreated it can spread to the ligament and bone which supports the tooth. Consequently, an erosion of these areas can lead to tooth loss.
Endodontic treatment is the removal of the infected or dead pulp through a small opening on the surface of the tooth. The area is then sterilized and sealed with a white fillings to prevent further infection and provide a natural appearance. Depending on the severity of the infection, root canal therapy may necessitate multiple visits to complete. If you are experiencing any pain or discomfort, contact Tajmeel Dental to book an appointment.
Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding, you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.
Why is root canal treatment needed?
If the pulp becomes infected, the infection may spread through the root canal system of the tooth. This may eventually lead to an abscess. If root canal treatment (RCT) is not carried out, the infection will spread and the tooth may need to be taken out.
Does it hurt?
No. A local anesthetic is used and it should feel no different to having an ordinary filling done.
What does it involve?
The aim of the treatment is to remove all infection from the root canal. The root is then cleaned and filled to prevent any further infection. Root canal treatment is a skilled and time-consuming procedure. Most courses of treatment will involve two or more visits to your dentist. At the first appointment, the infected pulp is removed. Any abscesses, which may be present, can also be drained at this time. The root canal is then cleaned and shaped ready for the filling. A temporary filling is put in and the tooth is left to settle. The tooth is checked at a later visit and when all the infection has cleared, the tooth is permanently filled.
What if I don't have the treatment?
The alternative is to have the tooth out. Once the pulp is destroyed, it can't heal and it is not recommended to leave an infected tooth in the mouth. Although some people would prefer an extraction, it is usually best to keep as many natural teeth as possible.
Will the tooth be safe after treatment?
Yes. However, it is better to restore the tooth with a crown to provide extra support and strength to the tooth.
What about aftercare?
Root-treated teeth should be treated just the same as any other tooth. Remember to clean your teeth at least once a day, preferably with fluoride toothpaste. Cut down on sugary snacks, and keep them only to mealtimes if possible. See your dentist for regular check-ups.