Root canal treatment helps to eliminate bacteria that is formed in the root canals of infected teeth. It’s the most reliable method of preventing teeth from becoming reinfected and saving those teeth. When you undergo a root canal, the infected & inflamed pulp is removed. The entire tooth is cleaned and disinfected carefully, after which it is filled properly and sealed. Let’s take a more detailed look at how this procedure is done.
How is Root Canal Treatment Done?
Many people feel that root canal treatment will be excruciating and become worried when their endodontist says it needs to be done to treat a diseased or damaged tooth. But as mentioned, this is one of the most reliable and time-tested ways to treat and save otherwise stable teeth. It helps to relieve pain and makes teeth healthy again.
Inside the tooth, and under the white enamel is a hard layer called dentin. Below this is the pulp that contains connective tissue nerves and blood vessels, which help in the development of the root of the teeth. Fully developed teeth can survive without that pulp because the tissues surrounding them continue to provide nourishment to the teeth.
Root canal treatment is quite a straightforward procedure that can easily be completed within just a couple of appointments, depending on your circumstances and the condition of the affected tooth. Root canals are relatively painless procedures and incredibly effective. You’ll be back to chewing, smiling, and biting very quickly.
Root Canal Facts
- No Major Pain– Since the patient is given anesthesia, the root canal is not any more uncomfortable than a standard dental procedure, such as getting wisdom teeth removed or a filling done. But root canal site can become a little numb or sore after the procedure, and you may feel mild discomfort for a few days after the procedure.
- Returning to normal activities– Although the site of the root canal will likely be numb for about two to four hours post the procedure, most people can return to work or school right after a root canal. But you should refrain from eating until the numbness vanishes completely.
- Root Canal Cost– The cost of the root canal varies depending on the complexity of the dental problem and which tooth has been affected. Infections in the molars are more difficult to treat, and that can escalate the cost of the treatment as well.
Most dental insurance policies also provide specific coverage for endodontic treatment, but that’s something you’d need to confirm with your insurance provider.
Typically, endodontic treatment, as well as restoration of natural teeth, are far less expensive than teeth extraction. Extracted teeth need to be replaced with a bridge/implant to restore normal chewing function and prevent the shifting of adjacent teeth. These other procedures end up costing more than endodontic treatment and proper restoration.
Advantages of Root Canal Treatment
There are several advantages to saving natural teeth with root canal treatment, such as:
- Normal biting force & sensation
- Efficient chewing
- Natural appearance
- Protects adjacent other teeth from excessive strain or wear
Determining Whether You Need a Root Canal
These are the symptoms which indicate you might need a root canal:
- Your tooth or teeth are particularly sensitive to cold and hot foods
- Severe pain while biting/chewing
- Abscesses on the gums
- A cracked or chipped tooth
- Swollen/tender gums
- Darkening or deep decay of the gums
If you have noticed any of the signs mentioned above, you should consult your dentist without any delay. They will tell you whether you would need a root canal or not and provide you with all the relevant information about the procedure.