ROOT CANAL TREATMENT
A tooth crown has three layers namely: enamel, dentine and pulp and the crown has cementum, dentin and pulp.
When dental caries is in the enamel or dentin it may be just need a regular tooth restoration but Root Canal Treatment (also called Endodontics) is needed when the
Blood or nerve supply of the tooth (known as the pulp) is infected through decay or injury.
It is most often needed in teeth which already have very large or deep fillings, or in teeth which have recently had a filling due to deep dental caries (decay) in the tooth.
Root can treatment of patients at Garg Dental Clinic, Bhavnagar is carried out under complete asepsis under the aegis of Dr Krutika Jani and a team of endodontists led by Dr Dhaval Jani.
The clinic is equipped with modern instrumentation for root canal treatments high success rate is achieved even in single sitting root canal treatments.
Q: WHY IS ROOT CANAL TREATMENT NEEDED?
A: If the pulp becomes infected, the infection may spread through the root canal system of the tooth which may eventually lead to an abscess.
If Root Canal Treatment (RCT) is not carried out, the infection will spread and the tooth may need to be taken out.
Q: DOES IT HURT?
A: No. A local Anaesthetic is used and the whole procedure should feel no different to that of having an ordinary filling done, although the appointment will be longer than that for a normal filling. There will usually be some pain or discomfort for 3-4 days following the treatment. The tooth may feel slightly tender and “different” for a few months following treatment.
Q: WHAT DOES THE TREATMENT INVOLVE?
A: The aim of the treatment is to remove all infection from the root canal. The root is then cleaned and filled to prevent any further infection. RCT is a skilled and time-consuming procedure. Sometimes the treatment will involve two or more appointments.
Firstly the infected pulp is removed. Any abscess, which may be present, can also be drained at this time. The root canal is then cleaned and shaped ready for the permanent root-filling. The root canal is disinfected using strong antiseptics and once the dentist is confident that the infection is gone, the root filling can be placed into the canal. The root filling is a rubber material which is compressed into the root to permanently seal it.
Q: WHAT WILL MY TOOTH LOOK LIKE AFTER TREATMENT?
A: In the past, a root filled tooth would often darken after treatment. However with modern techniques, this does not usually happen. If any discolouration should take place, there are several treatments available to restore the natural appearance.
Q: WHAT IF THE INFECTION COMES BACK?
A: Root canal treatment is usually very successful in 80-90%of cases. However, if there should be a recurrence of infection, the treatment can usually be repeated. If a tooth has a particularly difficult shape or a complication that prevents your dentist successfully treating the tooth, it is possible to refer to a specialist who can spend more time and use advanced techniques and instruments to treat your tooth. This can be a very expensive option however and is not normally available on the NHS.
Sometimes an extraction of the tooth is the only option if treatment fails.
Q: WHAT IF I DON'T HAVE THE TREATMENT?
A: The alternative to RCT is the removal of the tooth. Once the pulp is damaged, it cannot heal without treatment and it is not recommended to leave an infected tooth in the mouth.
Whilst some people would prefer an extraction, it is usually advisable to keep as many natural teeth as possible.
Q: ARE THERE ANY RISKS?
A: There is a moderate risk of pain and swelling immediately following treatment and for a few days afterwards. This is normally easily controlled by over-the-counter painkillers but can very occasionally be more severe.
During the treatment there is a risk of various complications. The dentist may “perforate” the tooth (this is when a hole is made through the side of the root-canal by the dentist when searching for particularly small or difficult root canals) or that one of the root-canal instruments breaks inside the tooth. The root-filling may sometimes inadvertently extend beyond the tip of the root, or may not completely fill the root to the tip. Any of these complications may compromise the prognosis for the tooth, and delay or prevent healing. In some cases a serious complication may necessitate extraction of the tooth or referral to a specialist.
Q: WILL THE TOOTH BE SAFE AFTER TREAMENT?
A: Root filled teeth are weaker and more brittle than live teeth, for this reason it is often advisable to restore the root-filled tooth with a crown or onlay to provide extra strength to the tooth. If this is necessary we normally wait a few months prior to crowning so that we can be sure that the root canal treatment is OK. Sometimes, filling the tooth with a composite (white) filling rather than an amalgam (metal) filling will strengthen the tooth considerably and avoid or postpone the need for a crown.
Q: WHAT ABOUT AFTERCARE?
A: Root treated teeth should be treated just the same as any other tooth. Remember to clean your teeth at least once a day, preferably with fluoride toothpaste. Keep sugary snacks to a minimum and only to mealtimes if possible. Attend your dentist for regular check-ups.
patient x-ray after successful rct.