What is a Root Canal?
A root canal is a popular dental procedure with more than 14 million procedures and counting being performed yearly. This easy treatment can protect your natural teeth and there would be no need for bridges or dental implants.
In the middle of your tooth is what is referred to as to “pulp”. The pulp is a cluster of blood vessels which assists in building the tooth that surrounds it. Cracks, repeated dental procedures, trauma to the tooth, chips, or deep tooth decay can cause infection of the pulp. Swelling of the tooth or noticeable injury, being sensitive to temperature or serious pain in the gums and tooth can be the symptoms of the infection.
What to Expect
Lots of root canal procedures are done to ease the pain of aches in the tooth as a result of infection or aggravation of the pulp. With new anesthetics and techniques, the majority of the patients say that they are at ease when the procedure is going on. Some few days after the treatment, particularly if there was infection or pain prior to the procedure, your tooth may feel sensitive. This pain can be reduced with prescribed or unprescribed drugs. Obey the instructions of the endodontist thoroughly.
Your tooth may still feel a little different from your natural teeth for a while after your root canal treatment is done. But, if you feel serious pain or pain which lasts more than a couple of days or pressure, contact your endodontist.
After Root Canal Treatment
Do not bite or chew on the tooth that is treated until it is fully restored by your dentist. The tooth that is not restored is prone to fracture, therefore you should visit your dentist for a total restoration promptly. If not, it is needed that you exercise good oral hygiene, which includes flossing, consistent checkups, brushing, and cleanings. Majority of the set of teeth treated endodontically are as durable as all other natural teeth.
In some cases, a tooth with endodontic treatment does not get better or pain continues. Once in a while, the tooth may get diseased or painful some months or years after it has been successfully treated. Usually when this happens, doing the root canal procedure again can help the tooth.
Symptoms of Root Canal
One of the signs that an endodontic is required is constant tooth pain. The pain in the tooth may disturb you always, or it might leave now and then but comes back constantly. A deep pain might be felt in the bone of your tooth. Or the pain might be felt in your jaw, face, or in the remaining teeth.
Sensitivity To Heat And Cold
Do you feel pain in your tooth when you take a cup of coffee or eat a food that is warm? Or maybe you feel sensitivity in your tooth whenever you take a chilled glass of water or when you eat ice cream. If you feel pain whenever you take something hot or cold, it may be a sign that the nerves and blood vessels in your tooth have been destroyed or infected.
Your tooth can be discolored because of an infection in the pulp of your tooth. Your tooth may look grayish as a result of the breakdown of the internal tissues or tooth trauma.
Swollen gums close to the tooth that hurts can be an indication of a problem that needs endodontics. Intermittent swelling can be experienced. It can be sensitive when you feel it, or your touch may not be painful to it. There may also be a small pimple on your gum. This is referred to as abscess, gum boil, or parulis. The pimple may bring out pus from the tooth infection. This can make you have bad breath and an awful taste in your mouth.
Pain When You Eat Or Touch The Tooth
If your tooth is sensitive when you eat or feel it, this could signify serious nerve damage or decay of the tooth, that may require being treated with endodontics. This is particularly the case where the sensitivity continues for a while and does not stop when you stop eating.
A Chipped Or Cracked Tooth
If your tooth is cracked or chipped due to an accident, by chewing a thing that is hard, or during a contact sport, bacteria can develop and cause infection of further aggravation. If you eventually injure your tooth without any crack or chip, the nerves of the tooth may still be impaired and can cause aggravation that could lead to severe agony and sensitivity that could require the root canal treatment.
An infected tooth might begin to loosen. A root canal treatment might be required when a couple of teeth are loose which can develop into an issue.
How Root Canal Treatment Works
First Step: Anesthetics
Local anesthesia will first be injected to numb the affected region of the tooth as well as the tissue. In a situation where the tooth’s pulp is acutely inflamed that is causing a lot of pain, numbing this region can take a while but it is required before the procedure can start.
Second Step: Dental Dam
A thin sheet of vinyl or rubber, known as a dental dam will be positioned on the affected region and surrounding teeth. The tooth being treated sticks out from a hole created in the dam in order to isolate it from the neighboring teeth. This creates a sterile environment where the root canal treatment can be performed to address the bacteria discovered in the mouth’s saliva.
Third Step: Pulp Chamber
A little hole that can be easily accessed is created through the biting surface from the rear of the affected tooth, permitting it to access the pulp chamber for the root canal procedure.
Fourth Step: Infection Removal
The infected or dead pulp tissue will be eliminated from the tooth using modern equipment specially developed to clean the pulp chamber and the root canals. This procedure is very painless since the region is numb, and it contains dead or dying tissue. After the pulp as well as the nerves are eliminated, the tooth will become painless.
Fifth Step: Sanitation
The canals will be sanitized using antibacterial and antiseptic solutions.
Sixth Step: Sealers
The canals will then be structured using any adaptable equipment to properly provide root canal sealers and fillings. The canals will then be cleaned to eliminate root canal leftovers before it will be sealed.
Seventh Step: Gutta-Percha
Root canals are usually chosen to perfectly fit the newly developed canal. A rubber-like material known as gutta-percha will be utilized to fill the space of the canal. This is a thermoplastic material (where “thermo” meaning “heat” and “plastic” meaning “to structure”) that is actually heated then compressed against and into the walls of the root canals to close them. Together with adhesive cement referred to as a sealer, the gutta-percha fills the canal space that was prepared. Sealing the canal is seriously crucial to stop them from being infected with bacteria.
Eight Step: Retention
A momentary or permanent filling material will later be placed to close the access hole which was created to treat canals, then the dental dam is removed. If there is no sufficient structure in the tooth to secure the restoration (filling), the endodontist or dentist may put a post (a metal or very strong plastic) in one of the canals that are inside the tooth to help in retaining it.
Ninth Step: Antibiotic
An antibiotic may be given to prevent or treat infection after the procedure. Make sure you obey the instruction of your endodontist or dentist cautiously. The effects after the treatment are little, which commonly lasts for some days to about a week. It is common to have little pain after treatment which includes little soreness which can be often managed with unprescribed drugs (aspirin, ibuprofen) or prescribed (codeine-type) medications, or by combining both.
Last Step: Filling
Your tooth will require a restoration that lasts long – a crown or a filling – to substitute lost tooth structure, and give a total seal to the top of the tooth. You will be referred back to your general dentist by your endodontist to know the type of restoration that is perfect for you. This step is of great importance as lots of studies show that if the filled canals are contaminated again with bacteria which is from the mouth, the infection around the tooth may reoccur.
Benefits of Root Canal Treatment
The Spread of Infection to the Neighboring Teeth is Avoided
An infection on the tooth cavity is the cause of tooth decay or toothache. With the therapy of the root canal, the bacteria which is the cause of the infection will be removed. After the bacteria is removed, the tooth will be disinfected and cleaned that, at the same time, will stop what causes tooth decay or toothache. Once the infected tooth is treated, there is no place for the bacteria to spread.
It Has a Virtually Appealing Result
Root canal treatment deals with the treatment of the nerve of the tooth pulp and ending it with a dental filling or a crown. The tooth which is treated is sealed with a crown or tooth-colored filling which gives a beautiful and new look.
It Aims to Protect The Teeth
Root canal treatment is beneficial in protecting the teeth and alleviating any concern about a missing tooth or tooth gaps. After completing a root canal procedure, it will restore your tooth to its natural beauty and functionality.
It Prevents Degeneration of the Jawbone
An advantage of the root canal procedure is tooth preservation. The jawbone stays without any alteration when the tooth is intact. A missing tooth can lead to the degeneration of the jawbone over a period of time.
It Promotes Oral and Overall Well Being
Chronic tooth decay severely affects the oral wellbeing of an individual. Any individual with poor oral wellbeing can easily get health issues like diabetes, heart disease, gastrointestinal infections, dementia, infections, and other severer conditions.
Experiencing a defected tooth can lead to a severe threat to personal health. Undergoing treatment for the decay can help to improve oral health and promote a sound general wellbeing.
Infectious tooth roots and pulp can be agonizing and discomforting. If you are experiencing consistent tooth agony as well as other symptoms, make sure you visit your dental specialist immediately for proper checkup and treatment.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is A Root Canal Painful?
A root canal procedure is not usually painful than the normal dental procedure like removing or filling a tooth because patients are usually given anesthesia. But a root canal can become numb or sore after the procedure which can lead to some pain for a couple of days.
How Will I Know if I Am A Candidate for Root Canal Treatment?
Root canals are required by individuals suffering from a cracked tooth, caused by injury, hereditary. Deep cavities or issues resulting from past fillings. The root canal is required for teeth that are very perceptive to cold and heat.
Can I Return to Work or School After the Root Canal Treatment?
Post-treatment can leave you numb for about two to four hours but most of the patients can return to work or school after completing the root canal treatment. However, it is recommended to stay away from chewing until the numbness is entirely gone.
What Is the Cost of A Root Canal?
The cost incurred after a root canal can depend on several factors such as the extent of the damage on the affected tooth and the type of tooth affected. Generally, endodontic treatment is more affordable than artificial tooth replacement or tooth removal.