ROOT CANAL TREATMENT IS TO REPAIR AND SAVE A TOOTH THAT IS BADLY DECAYED OR BECOMES INFECTED . DURING A ROOT CANAL PROCEDURES ,THE NERVE AND PULP ARE REMOVED & ROOT IS CLEANED AND SEALED.
SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS OF ROOT CANAL TREATMENT
- Severe toothache while chewing food or sensitivity when biting or pressing on the tooth .
- Prolonged sensitivity to hot or cold beverages.
- Spontaneous or constant dental pain.
- Swelling and tenderness in nearby gums ,ranging from a small pimple like pus formation on the gum leading to a swollen jaw or face.
- Discoloration of the tooth.
- Tenderness and even fever can be associated with infection in the root canal.
- Food lodgement or foul odour around a tooth.
- Any trauma or fracture of a tooth.
- Note that some teeth requiring root canal treatment have no symptoms, the best way to determine if you need a root canal is to see your dentist who will give the best advice.
BENEFITS OF ROOT CANAL TREATMENT.
- Your natural tooth is saved because RCT does not involve tooth removal.
- Root canal treatment is virtually painless procedure.
- The pain associated with the root cause will go away . There will be no need to continue using pain relievers that can cause side effects.
- It will also help stop abscess formation and swelling.
- It stops the spread of infection to other teeth by removing the bacteria from the tooth cavity.
- You can chew and bite a few days after the procedure.
PROCEDURE OF ROOT CANAL TREATMENT.
The entire root canal procedure may take place in one sitting ,or at times 2 or 3 sessions depending on the condition of the tooth . Each sitting may last between 20-30 minutes. It is a simple procedure with relatively no discomfort.
- At the outset , local anesthesia is administered to the tooth which is to be treated.
- After the tooth and the surrounding areas become numb , the dentist drills an opening through the crown to access the pulp chamber. If it is a front tooth, the dentist drills an opening from behind the tooth.
- Using special files the infected, diseased or dead pulp are cleaned from the root canals. The procedure does not cause any pain as the area is numb due to the anesthesia .
- Once all the infected and dead tissue is removed , the canals are disinfected using disinfectants.
- The canals are then shaped with fine instruments so that they can be filled with the the root canal fillings known as gutta percha and sealed. During the process of shaping , irrigation method is used to wash and clean the canals and remove the debris , before inserting the fillings and sealing the tooth.
- A temporary material which acts like a seal is placed above the gutta percha . This covering material is kept in place till a crown or a cap (which looks like a normal tooth ) is fixed .
- Thereafter , the crown is cemented in place that it never dislodges.
POST-TREATMENT GUIDELINES AFTER ROOT CANAL PROCEDURE.
The post treatment guidelines of root canal treatment include :
- take the medicines as advised by the dentist.
- Maintaining good oral hygiene is extremely important , with regular brushing and teeth flossing.
- It is advisable to not eat or drink anything for a couple of hours after root canal procedure, since the treated area is numb there are chances of accidently biting your teeth or tongue while eating. You can eat after the numbness wear off.
- Avoid chewing hard food for a few days until capping of the tooth is done.
WHY AFTER RCT CAPPING IS ADVISED ?
After root canal treatment capping is adviced in order to protect the tooth as it becomes brittle over a period of time .
- Without capping the tooth might get fracture or get re-infection due to microleakage.
- Cap helps you to sustain the chewing forces applied on the teeth while you chew food so fixing a cap becomes necessary to avoid further wear of tooth.
- Various types of crown are available like metal crowns , porcelain fused to metal crowns (PFM) , metal free ceramics (zirconia).
ROOT CANAL TREATMENT PREVENTION.
- Brush your teeth thoroughly with a soft bristled brush , twice each day for 2 minutes.
- Flossing at least once a day without fail.
- Avoid frequent snacks and too many sweets and sodas, as bacteria present in mouth turns these into acids which lead to cavity.
- If there is any problems like toothaches, sensitivity ,gum infections or other problems visit your dentist , waiting or ignoring could make a difference.
- Trauma resulting from a sports related injury can be reduced by wearing a mouth guard. Regular dental checkup for maintaining healthy and beautiful smile.
WHY RCT IS BETTER THAN EXTRACTING TOOTH ?
A common question among many dental patients is whether they should save a tooth or have it pulled ?
- There is one major difference between the two procedures that is root canal aims to save the natural tooth while an extraction means removal of tooth completely.
- Root canal treatment is virtually pain free procedure than compared to discomfort due to natural tooth extraction.
- Efficient and cost effective treatment after tooth extraction , if you want replacement of tooth like bridge or implant the cost may be higher.
- After root canal treatment capping is done which not only function like natural tooth they look great too.
HOW LONG WILL ROOT CANAL TREATMENT LAST ?
- Your restored tooth after root canal treatment could last a lifetime if the capping is done, also if you continue to care for your teeth and gums . However regular dental checkups are necessary . As long as the gums are healthy the tooth will remain healthy.
- There are only few cases where root canal treatment fails due to undetected canal branches, cracks in the root ,or an obstruction that makes it difficult to properly clean the root of the tooth. Regular dental cleanings and examinations can uncover a failed root canal.