Steps of root canal treatment
Root canal treatment is an excellent solution to save heavily damaged tooth in case the pulp is infected or the extent of the decay is so big, that it cannot be fixed with a filling. This treatment saves the tooth from extraction and allows the patient to use their natural teeth for longer. Over the course of the treatment the dentist removes the pulp and cleans the root canals thoroughly, then the tooth is sealed with a filling. Thanks to local anesthesia, the treatment is completely painless. After the treatment, the tooth and the surrounding area might be sensitive, which can be managed with painkillers.
What to expect during a root canal treatment?
During the root canal treatment the infected pulp is removed from the tooth and replaced with a special filling. The steps of the procedure are the following:
- An x-ray is taken for an accurate diagnosis.
- Local anesthesia is administered to make the treatment completely painless
- The dentist makes a small opening on the crown to access the root canals.
- The infected pulp is removed.
- The dentist cleans the root canals thoroughly and enlarges them to be able to fill them properly.
- In case the root canal treatment is carried out over multiple sessions, the dentist may place medication in the cleaned canal to kill any remaining bacteria and seals the tooth with a temporary filling.
- During the following visit, the medication and the temporary filling is removed, and the root canal filling is placed.
- Finally, the dentist seals the tooth with a filling or a crown, depending on the extent of the damage.
The circulation stops in the devitalised tooth which – along with the lack of pulp inside the tooth – makes the tooth more fragile and prone to chipping. In some cases, the dentist will recommend a crown to be placed on the tooth to avoid further problems.
What to expect after the treatment?
After the painless root canal treatment, you can enjoy your devitalized tooth for the rest of your life with proper care. However, it is important to know, that after a while the devitalized tooth can darken or become more fragile.
The most common cause of tooth discoloration after root canal treatment is a small amount of pulp being left inside the tooth. The decomposing pulp can make the tooth darken. This can be corrected by teeth whitening or veneers.