Root Canal Therapy
Root canal therapy is a very common technique that is performed by a dentist or endodontist.
This procedure is necessary when a tooth’s nerve chamber has either become damaged through some form of trauma or infected by decay. Root canal therapy is usually the only way that the tooth can be saved. Otherwise it would need to be removed, which would leave a vacant hole in the patient’s mouth.
Within the outer shell of every tooth is a chamber filled with soft tissue containing nerves and blood vessels. All of this is collectively referred to as the pulp, which enters from the bone up through the root canal. This entire system will provide nourishment to the tooth’s cells. The decay or injury can cause significant damage to or infect the tooth pulp. Through the procedure of a root canal treatment, the dentist will remove the pulp that is infected or damaged. This will help to maintain all other parts of the root structure that remains.
Pain or throbbing when biting, sensitivity to cold and hot foods and severe decay that has created an abscess in the bone are all signs that root canal therapy may be required. A person experiencing any of these symptoms will need to make an appointment with his or her doctor to have a full examination.
The procedure is relatively simple and can be performed as an outpatient procedure in the dentist office. The tooth will be anesthetized and then an opening will be created through the tooth crown, going into the pulp chamber. The canal’s length will be determined. All of the unhealthy pulp will be extracted. The dentist will clean the canal, enlarge it and shape it as necessary. The canal will then be filled and sealed. Finally, the tooth is sealed using a filling material. In most cases a crown will then be added for more protection, made either of gold or porcelain.
The root canal therapy has been given a bad reputation over the years. However, nowadays it should be a painless procedure under local anaesthesia. It is the better alternative than having a tooth removed and subsequently having either a hole where the tooth was or having an artificial tooth put in its place.
Only a dentist will be able to determine if a root canal treatment is the best route to go. The moment a person begins to experience any of the warning signs, an appointment should be made. Getting immediate dental health can be enough to save the tooth, or even prevent the need for root canal therapy in certain cases. Otherwise a person may end up losing the tooth because he or she hesitated in making an appointment for too long.