Root Canal Treatment

Root canal cleaning is a dental procedure that involves the extraction of root nerves from a tooth, cleaning and shaping the canal cavity and then inserting fillers to prevent bacteria from re-entering nerve system.

Most often root canal is done so that the patient can retain the functional and cosmetic look. Dead nerves are considered non-vital. Even then, it’s possible for bacteria to accumulate in the nerve and cause an infection.

Why Root Canal Treatment?
• Every healthy tooth has a pulp chamber, which contains the pulp: nerves and blood vessels. The pulp serves to form the roots of the tooth when it was developing. It also provides sensation to the tooth when exposed to extreme temperature and alarms us when there is decay.
• However not all cavities can be resolved by just a filling, if the decay or pre-existing damage is too deep; the pulp can become irreversibly inflamed and infected eventually.
• Once the pulp is injured, the tooth starts to die; this can cause extreme pain – a toothache.
• Overtime, the infection can travel down the root to cause damage around the structures beyond the root. Swelling or pimple-like structure (sinus tract) can form around the gums of the tooth.
• Other causes of pulp injury include very deep fillings, trauma, cracked tooth and severe gum disease.

Steps of Root Canal Treatment

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Step 1

As a starting point for performing your tooth’s treatment, your dentist will need to gain access to its nerve space. This step is called creating an “access cavity.” An access cavity in the chewing surface of a molar.

Your dentist will use their dental drill to make a hole that extends through the surface of your tooth to its pulp chamber.
This is the opening through which they will perform their work.

When creating the access cavity, the dentist will also remove all tooth decay, and any loose or fragile portions of the tooth or its filling.

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Step 2

Your dentist’s goal will be to treat the entire length of your tooth’s nerve space but not beyond. Doing so is not only important part of the treatment process but also helps to minimise post-operative pain.

To be able to work within these confines, your dentist must measure the length of each of your tooth’s root canals. This measurement is typically calculated to the nearest 1/2 millimeter.

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Step 3

The next step of the root canal process involves “cleaning and shaping” the interior of the tooth. Its cleaning aspect removes nerve tissue (live and/or dead), as well as bacteria, toxins and other debris harbored inside the tooth.

Shaping refers to a process where the configuration of a tooth’s canals are enlarged and flared, so they have a shape that’s ideal for the procedure’s filling and sealing step.

In this process the dentist seeks to accomplish the goals above without removing so much internal tooth structure that the integrity of the tooth is compromised.

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Step 4

Once the interior of the tooth has been thoroughly cleansed and properly shaped, it’s ready to be sealed / have its hollow interior filled in.

In some cases, the dentist will want to place the filling material immediately after they’ve finished cleaning the tooth, where in some other cases, they may feel that it is best to wait about a week before performing this step.