When we talk about what a root canal is, we mainly talk about different things which include misconceptions about root canal, reason root canal is required, and how root canal can be prevented through proper oral care.
The main purpose of root canal treatment is to treat the tooth decay. When a tooth starts decaying, it starts from the tooth enamel. The decay progresses through the enamel and reaches the dentin. It doesn’t stop there as it marches towards the pulp. At this point, the tooth decay becomes irreversible. As the nerve structure becomes infected, it starts to die. This process also leads to the release of some chemicals which cause infection in the root of the tooth. This infection can cause severe kind of inflammation and pain. With the infection at this stage, the patient needs to see the dentist in order to get relief. Remember, it is not all about the pain because pain is just a symptom. The real culprit is the infection which keeps gaining capacity to cause real damage. And since the treatment of this infection can be complex, you need to choose your dentist quite carefully.
Who performs this treatment?
Root canal treatment is usually performed by a general dentist or an endodontist. An endodontist is a professional who gets specialized training for dealing with the dental infections related to inner part of the teeth. On the other hand, a dentist has to decide whether to perform a root canal or refer that case to the endodontist.
Root canal procedure
For the root canal procedure to begin, the first thing that dentist would do is anesthetizing the tooth. Anesthetization of tooth is for the purpose of making the procedure painless. Then the decayed portion, infected pulp and any other infected nerves are removed. After this removal, the tooth is prepared to be filled. Filling material is usually a rubbery substance which is called gutta-percha. This rubbery substance is filled to seal the tooth so that oral fluids could be prevented from reaching the inner part of the tooth.
Although the tooth gets restored with this filling, the tooth is usually in a weaker state. In this condition, this particular tooth cannot be used for chewing foods. Therefore, the dentist may decide to cover the tooth with a crown. The filling and the crown collectively give tooth enough strength to ensure pressure which comes from chewing and biting foods.
After the treatment is complete, you need to visit the dentist after 6 months to get the tooth checked. This is to ensure that the root canal you have got is working fine.