Root canal treatment, also called endodontic treatment, is a dental procedure wherein the dental surgeon removes the diseased or damaged pulp and fills and seals the inside areas (the root canals and the pulp chamber).
The main cause of a toothache is inflamed or infected pulp. In order to relieve the pain and prevent more complications, the tooth might be extracted, i.e. removed surgically or saved by performing this treatment. Today, this treatment has become a common dental procedure, with more than fourteen million performed every year, with a success rate of 95%.
A general dentist or an endodentist (a dentist specializing in endodentic, which means inside the tooth)might perform this treatment. The pulp’s soft tissues inside the tooth contains the blood supply, with the help of which the tooth gets its nutrients, and the nerve by which the tooth senses cold and hot. This tissue is susceptible to damage from deep dental decay, accidental injury, tooth fracture or trauma from recurrent dental procedures (such as several fillings over time). If at all a tooth gets diseased or injured, bacteria builds up inside the pulp, thus spreading infection from the natural crown of the tooth to the root tips in the jawbone thus causing severe pain.
The surgeon performs this treatment under local anesthesia. He places a thin sheet of rubber, known as a rubber dam, so as to isolate the tooth. The dentist takes out any tooth decay and makes an opening through the natural crown of the tooth into the pulp chamber. Creating this access also relieves the pressure inside the tooth and can ease pain to a great extent. The length of the root canal is then determined by the dentist, generally with a series of x-rays. He then uses small wire like files for cleaning the entire canal space of diseased pulp tissue and bacteria. The debris is then flushed out with large amounts of water. The canals are also slightly enlarged and shaped to receive an inert filling material known as gutta percha. However, the tooth is not considered to be filled and permanently sealed until it’s entirely free of active infection. The dentist might place a temporary seal, or leave the tooth open to drain and prescribe an antibiotic to counter any spread of infection from the tooth. This is the primary reason that the root canal treatment might need many visits to the dentist.
How to Prepare
There is no typical preparation for this treatment as such. Once the tooth is opened to drain, the dentist could prescribe an antibiotic, after which the patient must take the full prescribed course. As the infection comes under control, local anesthetic is more effective, so that this procedure might be performed without any discomfort.
It’s highly possible that the tooth could be sore for few days after filling. The dentist might subscribe some antibiotic to the patient to ease the soreness. The tissues around the tooth might also be irritated. The patient can be benefited by rinsing the mouth with hot salt water many times a day. Also, the patient must avoid chewing on the side of the mouth for first few days where the procedure has been done. Also, remember that for a successful treatment you need to consult the best orthodontist in Pune that will guide you well in every possible way.