Root Canal Treatment
The root canal procedure needs one or more hospital visits and is performed by our experienced dentists.
Your dentist will begin the procedure by taking an X-ray to study the shape of the root canals and see whether there are any signs of infection in the surrounding bone.
An anesthesia is applied to numb the area near the tooth. In fact, anesthesia is not really needed, because the nerve is dead, but your dentist will anesthetize the area to make you more relaxed and at ease.
In the next step, your dentist will position a rubber dam (a piece of rubber) around the tooth to keep the area dry and free of saliva during the procedure.
Then an access hole is drilled into the tooth. The pulp, as well as bacteria, dead nerve tissue, and other debris, is removed from the tooth. This process is achieved by using root canal files (endodontic files). A range of these files of increasing diameter are each consecutively placed into the access hole and worked down the full length of the tooth to scrape and scrub the sides of the root canals. Water or sodium hypochlorite is used regularly to flush away the debris.
After the tooth is meticulously cleaned, it will need to be sealed. A few dentists prefer to wait for a week before sealing the tooth. For example, if an infection is present, your dentist may place a medication inside the tooth to get rid of the infection.
Our dentists may opt to seal the tooth the same day it is cleaned out. If the root canal treatment is not finished on the same day, a temporary filling is placed in the access hole to prevent the entry of contaminants until your next appointment.
The next step involves filling the interior of the tooth with a sealer paste and a rubber compound. A filling is also placed in the access hole to close it (See figure below).
The last step often consist of additional restoration of the tooth. Since a tooth that requires root canal treatment is usually one which has a large filling or substantial decay or other weakness, a crown or other restoration usually needs to be placed on the tooth to protect it, prevent it from braking and repair it to full function. Your dentist will explain the need for any added dental work with you (See figure below).
What You Can Expect After Root Canal Treatment
The procedure will relieve you of the pain. Always remember to minimize chewing on the tooth under repair until the root canal treatment is completely finished – which is, the permanent filling and a crown is in place. This approach helps avoid recontamination of the interior of the tooth and possibly preventing a fragile tooth from breaking before the tooth can be completely repaired.