A Brief Guide on Root Canal Therapy

A Brief Guide on Root Canal Therapy

The thought of root canal evokes pain in our minds but very few people know what root canal treatment is? Root canal therapy, also called endodontic therapy, is a dental treatment to remove infection present inside the tooth. It also helps to protect the tooth from future infections. The treatment takes place in the pulp of the tooth, which is the root canal.

Root Canal: Definition

Root canal refers to the hollow section of the teeth that comprise of blood vessels, nerve tissue and other cells, these together are called a pulp. A tooth entails a crown and roots. Crown is the portion that lies above the gum and root is the portion that is present below the gum. The function of the root is to attach the tooth to the jawbone.

The pulp is the part that is present inside the crown and the root. It nourishes the tooth and gives moisture to the surrounding area. It is the pulp that senses cold and hot temperature as painful.

The other name of this dental procedure is endodontic therapy which means “inside the tooth”. Root canal therapy has become the common name of the procedure.

Who needs the treatment?

Once the pulp becomes diseased or injured, it cannot heal itself which leads to the death of the tissues. It can get worse in case of a deep cavity, a loose filling or a cracked tooth because there is the chance of bacteria entering the pulp. The bacteria then starts eroding the pulp and destroying it. The bacteria can also cause an infection to the bone by penetrating through the root openings. This will consequently lead to the weakening of the bone and breaking it down. The ligaments encompassing the tooth swell up and the tooth becomes loose.

This pulp injury will cause the tooth to be sensitive to low and high temperatures. The person suffering might experience pain while chewing the food and some also suffer from an incessant throbbing pain.

If not treated on time, eventually a tooth becomes loose and needs extracting. The infection spreads. Patients have to opt for extraction when the tooth cannot be repaired and is extremely painful. This can happen when there is a large decay, trauma, or loss of bone due to gum disease. Gum disease is also called periodontal disease.

Extracting a tooth, however, is not desirable as once extracted, the surrounding tooth begins to move and become crooked which is unsightly and causes difficultly in taking a bite of food.

Tooth canal treatment therefore not only saves the tooth but also relieves the pain.

In a situation where a tooth cannot be saved, the implant is the next best option.

Cost of the treatment

Thought to be severely painful, it is a pain-relieving treatment. The procedure involves taking out nerves from the pulp of the tooth. The cost of root canal therapy is high and variable but it is cheaper than removing a tooth or replacing it with a crown or a bridge.

Steps of root canal treatment:

It is done in three steps. It might take a few sessions to reach its completion.

  • Cleaning the tooth Canal: the dentist removes all that is present inside the root canal by making a small hole on the surface of the tooth.
  • Filling the root canal: After the shaping and decontamination of the entire area, the hole is filled with a rubber-like material, to seal the canal by using adhesive cement.
  • Dental Crown or a filling: To prevent the teeth from becoming more brittle and susceptible to damage, a crown or a filling is added to allow the tooth to receive the nourishment.

Prevention

To prevent tooth decay, infection and gum disease, the dentists recommend:

  • Brushing your teeth twice a day. Once before bedtime without fail.
  • Using toothpaste that contains fluoride.
  • Replacing a suitable toothbrush regularly.
  • Visiting the dentist regularly.
  • Following a healthy diet and avoiding sugary food and drinks.
  • Flossing between the teeth to prevent the buildup of plaque.

To sustain a healthy smile, it is of utmost importance that a person inculcates healthy lifestyle habits. If you are planning to go for root canal therapy, book an appointment with Brooklin Village Dental Care.