Dental pain is not something you should ignore. Left untreated, infections can kill teeth and spread to other parts of your mouth and to the rest of your body. To treat infections, we use a root canal treatment.
But while the mere mention of root canal treatments often causes panic, this simple procedure doesn’t live up to its fear-inducing reputation. In fact, root canal treatments put severe dental pain to an end, saving an infected tooth in the process.
So, what is a root canal treatment? Why do we perform them? And what does the procedure involve?
Let’s take a look at everything you need to know about root canal treatments.
Before we delve into root canal treatments, let’s take a look at the anatomy of your teeth. Inside each tooth, there is an area filled with living tissue called the pulp chamber. This tissue is known as the dental pulp. It consists of nerve endings, connective tissue, and blood vessels. The dental pulp extends down from the pulp chamber into the root canals.
The root canals reach down below the visible surface of your tooth. Each tooth can have up to four root canals.
If bacteria enters your tooth through a cavity, crack, or chip, it will travel to the dental pulp causing an infection. The symptoms of a root canal infection include:
The tooth may also become abscessed.
Root canal treatment is a procedure to remove infected matter from inside your tooth. We use the latest technology to ensure all bacteria are removed.
Before we begin, we’ll take x-rays of the tooth so we get a clear picture of where the infection is. Next, we’ll remove the affected pulp and clean the inside of the tooth. Once we’re satisfied that the infection is gone, we’ll use a naturally-occurring latex-like material called gutta percha to fill the pulp chamber.
After we’ve finished, we’ll close the tooth using a filling. We’ll often recommend having a dental crown fitted too. This will protect the tooth from further infection.
Dental extractions might take less time than a root canal treatment, but we’d only do this as a last resort when the tooth cannot be saved.
Once you lose a tooth, you’ll have an increased risk of tooth decay, gum disease, and dental drift. Dental drift is where teeth move along the jawline into gaps.
If you choose to ignore your toothache, it will get worse. While the symptoms of a root canal infection will briefly disappear, they will return. Typically, after the infection has taken its course on your tooth, it will become necrotic.
But even if the tooth dies, the infection will still continue to cause you pain and discomfort. It could spread to neighbouring teeth, gums, and to your jaw. If the infection enters your bloodstream, it could even reach vital organs like your heart.
The best ways to avoid root canal infection include:
Root canal treatments give instant relief from the pain associated with dental infections.
If you’re worried that you need a root canal treatment, don’t put off coming to see us. Our friendly team will talk you through the procedure and do everything we can to help you feel at ease.
Call us today to book your appointment.Back to Blog
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