What is Root Canal Treatment?
Root Canal Treatment is a procedure that eliminates the bacteria from the infected root canal, preventing reinfection of the tooth.
During the treatment, the infected pulp is removed and cleaned, and your dentist will disinfect the inside of your tooth before sealing up the gap with a rubber-like material known as gutta-percha.
Thereafter, your tooth will typically be restored using a dental crown for protection.
SIGNS THAT YOU NEED A ROOT CANAL TREATMENT
If you notice any of these symptoms, see a dentist as soon as possible. The sooner your tooth can be treated, the lower the risk of complications.
Your teeth can be damaged from biting on hard foods or even getting hit from accidents. Sometimes, a tooth may chip, crack or fracture, causing pain. Cracked teeth are one of major factors that lead to tooth decay and infections.
You may feel discomfort or pain on a certain tooth throughout the day and whenever you eat. This could be a sign that the nerves of the tooth are exposed or damaged. Those with damaged fillings or fallen dental crowns might have a similar experience.
Gum abscess occurs when pus develops in the gum or deep inside the tooth. If left untreated, the pus may contaminate your blood and cause infections throughout your body.
You might be experiencing tooth sensitivity if you feel an intense or dull aching pain jolting through your tooth.
Tooth sensitivity is common can be improved by using specially formulated toothpastes. However, if the pain persists, it might be an indication of damaged nerves and you should consult a dentist immediately.
Unlike normal tooth decay which causes a cavity on the tooth's surface, deep decay happens when a decay affects the roots and the nerves inside the tooth. Infections caused by deep decay can be very painful.
Infected teeth may cause the gum to become inflamed and swell.
Infected pulp can also cause gum swelling and you may even develop a gum boil around an infected tooth. A person with swollen gums may experience discomfort and pain whenever they eat, drink, or clean their teeth.
Teeth can become discoloured (and turn dark gray or darker) due to infected or damaged nerves. Those with discoloured teeth may experience bad breath or may be left with a bad taste lingering inside their mouths.
ROOT CANAL TREATMENT PROCESS
Relieve your toothaches and avoid tooth extraction.
Consultation & Diagnosis
A consultation with your dentist and thorough physical examination of your oral condition and teeth.
X-rays will be taken to assess and visualize the extent of the infection in the tooth, followed by a proposed treatment plan.
Before the procedure begins, the area around the infected tooth will be numbed with local anaesthetic.
Removal of Infected Pulp in the Root Canal
A small opening will be made on the top of your tooth to expose the infected pulp. Your dentist will proceed to clear the infected pulp from the tooth.
Cleaning and Disinfecting the Root Canal
The root canal will be cleaned and shaped, and flushed with disinfectant before it is sealed with a rubber sealant called gutta-percha.
Filling the Root Canal
A filling will be placed to cover the cavity and it will be sealed off to prevent bacterial infection.
AFTERCARE FOR ROOT CANAL TREATMENT
It is normal for you to experience some mild pain and sensitivity after the local anesthetic wears off. Your dentist may prescribe medication to help with the pain and swelling after the root canal treatment.
Restoring the Tooth With a Dental Crown
The treatment leaves the tooth with a brittle structure. To prevent the tooth from cracking or breaking, we strongly advise you to have a dental crown placed over the tooth to cover the biting surface as soon as possible.
No. In fact, the treatment helps to alleviate the pain. The pain that is felt usually comes from inflammation and swelling caused by the infection in your tooth.
During your root canal treatment, your dentist will remove infected tissues and treat the infected area with antibacterial medication before sealing the cavity with filling.
Some may feel pain after the treatment, but this should subside after a few days as the infected area recovers. However, you should consult your dentist if the pain or swelling persists.
Root canal procedures usually take an hour to complete.
The exact duration depends several factors such as the number of tooth infections, the condition of your teeth and the number of treatments required. Your dentist will advise you on this according to your oral health condition.
When a tooth is extracted, your surrounding teeth may shift to fill up the gap left by the missing tooth, causing your teeth to be misaligned.
On the other hand, root canal treatment eliminates tooth pain without extraction, so your teeth can remain aligned.
Tooth extraction should thus only be a last resort when the tooth is badly decayed, damaged or broken and cannot be restored.
In many instances, root canal treatment is still recommended to save your natural tooth over dental implants.
Dental implants may not be suitable for everyone. Moreover, when a dental implant is being placed under sub-optimal conditions, it may lead to other complications. Dental implants should only be considered when the lifecycle of the tooth ends.
Yes, if your dentist has recommended for you to do so. While the infected tooth may not hurt, bacteria will continue to infect the pulp. When the pulp becomes injured or diseased, it becomes unable to repair itself, and the infected tissues will swell and become inflamed.
If root canal treatment is not administered, the bacteria will continue to penetrate into your jawbone and spread the infection to other parts of your body.
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