What is root canal treatment?
When a tooth becomes infected or damaged by a small cavity, a small filling will usually suffice to restore the tooth back to it’s original form and restore function. If the damage to the tooth is more extensive, then a crown or an inlay can be considered to restore form and function. However, sometimes, damage to the tooth can be very extensive, with the cavity increasing at the cost of the interior of the tooth, known as the pulp. The pulp is essentially the heart of the tooth and contains nerves and blood vessels. Once this area is compromised, a root canal treatment must be done to clear out the infection and save the tooth.
What happens if I don’t do a root canal treatment?
If a root canal treatment is not done, the infection will continue to spread to the bone, effectively causing loss of the tooth and spread of the infection to distant parts of the body. Continued infection also reduces the bone available in this area for a future implant or denture.
What happens during a root canal procedure?
After numbing the tooth, the infection is cleared by a cleaning and disinfecting process of the roots. Xrays are taken as needed to ensure that the entire root is treated effectively. This cleaning phase of the root canal may require 1-3 visits, depending on the size of the infection. The root canal is then filled with an inert material and sealed. After the root canal treatment is completed, a decision is made by the restorative dentist if the tooth needs a post. A post is a small metallic insert which is used to replace lost or missing tooth structure. The post is frequently needed to give sufficient bulk to the tooth so that a crown can be placed on the tooth. Root canals are a fantastic way to prolong the life of the tooth by many years.
What can I expect after the root canal procedure?
Most patient repot mild soreness for a few days after the procedure. Pain and infection is managed by pain killers and antibiotics which will be prescribed to you by the team at Acharya Dental. One week after the root canal procedure, you will be ready to begin the process of making a crown for your tooth. Remember, that a root canal treated tooth is not immune to future decay and you still have to brush and floss your teeth everyday to ensure that your root canal treated teeth (and your other teeth) remain healthy for a long time.