To save your tooth and gum, the dentist must perform root canal treatment in cases when there is a sharp and intense dental pain. It is a procedure that relives the dental pain when there is an inflammation or infection in the roots of the tooth, which poses a high risk to the tissue of the gums around the aching tooth. If such a procedure is not carried out, the tooth and the gum will become infected, and this could lead to the developing of serious diseases.
For that purpose, the pulp must be removed so that it won’t open space for bacteria, infection, or abscess, which is a pus-filled pocket formed at the end of the roots. Neglecting to deal with it might lead to even more serious problems, for example excessive swelling that can spread to other areas of the face, neck, head, etc.,; bone loss around the areas of the face, neck or head and, finally, drainage problems from the root to the side of the tooth, into the gums and into the skin.
Here is how it is done, step by step, along with some explanations about the terms.
Take a look at the picture that represents the structure of the tooth.
When there is decay, and the pulp is infected, the abscess is created in the root. This must be taken out by removing the pulp inside the tooth, cleaning, disinfecting, and shaping the root canals and at the end, placing a filling to seal the space.
The steps of Root Canal Treatment
Several office visits are recommended before the procedure takes place. The dentist or the endodontist performs it depending on the severity of the root canal treatment. Then an X-ray is made so that the doctor can determine if there is any infection in the surrounding bone. Then local anesthesia is used to numb the area around the tooth so that the patient is at ease and not feel any pain (even though in most cases the nerve is dead and patients can’t feel the pain).
The tooth is surrounded by a rubber dam around the tooth to protect it from saliva and keep it dry during the procedure. Once the tooth’s dryness is ensured, the dentist will drill an access hole into the tooth. They will remove any bacteria, decayed nerve tissue, and other debris along with the pulp. With the help of canal files, the dentist will work his way down the canal and scrub and scrape the sides of the canal. During the procedure, the dentist will use water or sodium hypochlorite to flush the debris away.
After a thorough cleaning, the tooth is sealed. The sealing can be done after a week in cases when the infection is treated with medicine inside the tooth. In this case, a temporary filling might be placed to keep the tooth sealed and protected from saliva and food until the next appointment.
Finally, the permanent sealing of the tooth happens. With a sealer paste put inside the tooth and a small rubber compound, the tooth is permanently sealed. Furthermore, the tooth might be restored with the help of a crown, a crown and post, or in another way so that it can function properly.
In the days following the procedure, the teeth will be sensitive because of the tissue inflammation. That sensitivity will be higher if the procedure was painful, or there was lots of infection to deal with. To decrease the feeling of pain, pain medications are prescribed or bought over-the-counter such as ibuprofen or naproxen. Also, it is recommended that desensitizing toothpaste is used. This type of toothpaste contains ingredients that will block. Such a toothpaste is the Mi paste tooth sensitivity toothpaste that relieves sensitivity to a great extent. Plus, it is used as an anti-plaque agent.
Of course, the care for the teeth doesn’t stop several days after the procedure. Overall oral health is very important so that further problems like this one are prevented from happening. Brushing at least twice a day, flossing, and regular use of mouthwash are recommended activities as well as weeing the dentist for regular check-ups.
A Final Tip
As the most common cause of the infected and inflamed root canal are the deep decay, repeated dental procedures and large fillings as well as the cracks and chips in the tooth or trauma to the face, the patient needs to be careful and the least what they can do is having a regular oral hygiene routine.