Root canal treatment is a branch of dentistry involved in cleaning up infected nerve canals due to caries or trauma.
When the nerve canals are infected by caries or trauma, it could cause pain and sometimes swelling of the gums. During root canal treatment, the tooth will be anaesthetized and the dentists will remove the infection from the nerve canals and fill it up with an inert material to prevent re-infection of the canals.
It is a misconception that root canal treatment is painful. The infected tooth is painful because of the infection. During root canal treatment, the tooth is anaesthetized and patient will be relieved of the pain from then on. After the root canal treatment, the tooth will be free of infection and thus the pain will be eliminated or very much reduced. Antibiotics may be given to further control the infection.
The picture number 1 shows decay has invaded into the nerve canal of the tooth. The dentist will remove the decay and clean up the nerve canal as seen in the picture number 2 and 3.
The picture number 4 shows that an inert material has been added to the nerve canal to seal the canals and prevent re-infection of the nerve canals.
“After root canal treatment, my tooth will not feel natural”
In root canal treatment, only the nerve canals are affected. The tooth will still feel normal. However, root canal treated teeth are more brittle, thus we would advise patient to have a crown on the tooth to protect the tooth from fracture.Root canal treatment is a better option to save a tooth as opposed to extraction.
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