Root Canal Treatment
What Is Root Canal Treatment?
Root canal treatment involves the removal of infected or damaged pulp tissues from a diseased tooth. Dentist will treat the interior aspects of a tooth, specifically, that space occupied by “pulp tissue” (most people refer as “nerve”).
(On our pages, we have chosen to use the terms nerve, nerve tissue, and pulp tissue as if they all refer to the same thing.)
Root canal treatment can be used to resolve many different types of nerve-related tooth problems. This therapy saves teeth that would otherwise be extracted. Although the pulp tissue has been removed, the tooth is still anchored in the bone and can still function in the mouth.
What Is The Function Of A Tooth’s Nerve?
Every tooth has at least one root, and some has 2, 3 or more. Each tooth root will have at least one root canal. The roots of some teeth may be having 2 or more canals. For example, anterior(front) teeth usually contain only 1 canal, where else molar teeth always contain 3 or 4 canals. The number of root canals in a tooth will affect the cost and treatment time of root canal therapy.
A tooth’s nerve tissue plays an important role in the early formation and development of the tooth. Then, once it has formed, the nerve tissue supplies nutrients and moisture to dentin and enamel. It also produces new tooth structure (reparative dentin) as is needed to help to wall off and protect the nerve from insult or injury (such as extreme temperature or advancing tooth decay). But, under normal circumstances, the nerve tissue inside our teeth provides us with very little information.
That means, if it’s present and healthy, then wonderful. But, if a tooth has had its nerve removed as a part of root canal treatment, then that’s fine too. You will never miss it.
How Is Root Canal Treatment Done?
Root canal therapy involves 2 stages. In the first stage, we removes as many contaminates as possible from within a tooth’s nerve space. This is follow by the next stage of filling up and sealing off this space so contaminates can’t continue to leak in, or out.
Root canal anatomy can be quite complex, making treatment takes up to several chair-side appointments. Root canals don’t have a precise shape like what we show in our illustrations. Portions of a canal can be more like what you see with a river, where there is a main channel but also little side branches that leave and return to the main stream. That’s why, even after the most diligent of efforts, it is likely that some debris remains left behind. So, the sealing process is essential to help these contaminates remain entombed within the tooth and don’t seep out to inflame the tissues that surround the root.
1. Cleaning aspect of root canal therapy.
This involves “cleaning” of a tooth’s nerve space contains contaminates that will ultimately leak out of the tooth’s root tip and persistently irritate (inflame) the tissues that surround it. These items include bacteria, nerve tissue, the organic debris left over from the breakdown of nerve tissue, and bacterial toxins.
Dentist will first “numb up” the tooth and surrounding gum tissue with a local anesthetic. Then, an opening is made to the crown of the tooth until we reach the pulp chamber under local anesthetics. The infected pulp tissues are then removed. The canals are cleaned and shaped using our special instruments. X-rays may be needed to check proper cleaning of the canals.
At the end of the 1st stage treatment, the canals will be filled up with medication and the opening will be closed up. A mild analgesic (sometimes with antibiotic) will usually take care of the discomfort after cleaning procedure.
2. Sealing aspect of root canal therapy.
The filling process associated with root canal treatment has to do with filling in and sealing off the, now empty, nerve space inside the tooth. The filling material creates a seal (down at the root’s tip) that prevents contaminates from seeping back into the tooth. Again, x-rays is needed for a proper sealing procedure to take place.
After the proper sealing, the crown of the tooth are then restored back using filling materials or crowning. Definitely, here in this clinic, you are always welcome to the check with our doctor which option is best for you.
What Are The Signs And Symptoms That Indicate I Need Root Canal Treatment?
Most of the time, an examination by dentist is needed to determine if your tooth requires root canal treatment. Below are some signs that indicate a need for root canal therapy:
1. Sensitive to cold and hot beverages or food.
Advance tooth decay giving a path for bacteria to penetrate through pulp chamber causing infection of the pulp tissue.
2. History of pain and swelling (tooth abscess).
If sensitivity of the tooth is left untreated, the nerve tissue will start to degenerate (die), and bacteria have taken up residence inside the tooth’s nerve area. That’s mean, there is no effective way for white blood cells to get at the bacteria to combat them. The blood and lymphatic vessels that are needed to transport the white blood cells either no longer exist, or at least have been severely compromised.
In this situation, patient will start to feel discomfort and toothache. The pain may range from mild, moderate to severe. At worst, bacterial infection will overwhelm body’s defense mechanisms causing an acute tooth abscess.
3. Some teeth display few or no symptoms.
There can be instances where a tooth has never given any sign that suggests that there is a problem with its “nerve.” The pulp inside a tooth can degenerate without producing any obvious symptoms at all. Dentists often discover these types of teeth during routine x-ray evaluations. That’s why in our clinic, we stress very much in term of routine dental check!
4. Presence of persistent/ recurring pimple on the gum of affected tooth.
An infection located inside a tooth may cause the formation of a pimple-like lesion on a person’s nearby gum tissue. Because they are literally drains for pus, the person might notice that they discharge a bad taste. Most of the time, this type of lesion are discovered while performing a routine oral examination, even though the patient hasn’t noticed it at all.
5. Presence of an individually darkened tooth.
Teeth that have been traumatized before in an accident sometimes require root canal treatment. The tooth’s nerve tissue may undergo degeneration without symptoms. When a tooth’s nerve tissue necroses, the byproducts that are created can penetrate into the hard tissues of the tooth (dentin and enamel) and produce a staining effect. It is very common that this type of tooth has a slightly darker appearance than its neighbors.
Is Having Root Canal Therapy Painful?
Advance technology and material available in this clinic has made root canal treatment a much more comfortable procedure than before. For an average case, root canal treatment should be no different than having other types of dental procedures, such as having a filling placed.
Almost certainly dentist needs to numb your tooth before performing root canal treatment. By numbing up the tooth, you will be more at ease and relaxed. For cases where a person’s tooth has been the source of pain or swelling, it is the root canal therapy that will initiate the process by which the painful or swollen tooth can be settled down. Even in those cases where relief is not immediate and total, the treatment should at least significantly reduce the level of pain, and also set the stage where the healing process can begin (and take place at a much more rapid rate than if root canal treatment had not been initiated).
However, you may have some discomfort after each scheduled appointment (especially after cleaning process). The tooth might be slightly tender or hurt for the first 2 days. This is due to the inflammation of the surrounding tissues. Analgesic prescribe by dentist will usually take care of the discomfort.