What is Root Canal: Symptoms and Treatment


When your tooth is damaged to a point where it’s almost difficult to recover through normal oral treatment and the infection is deep within, your dentist will suggest you for a root canal. But most of us are unaware of the procedure and when do you need one.

Here is a brief outlook on its symptoms, procedure and other relevant information, coming directly from the finest dentists in Birmingham.

Root Canal
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What Is A Root Canal?

As described by the National Institutes of Health, a root canal is a procedure where your dentist removes bacteria and dead or dying tissue from deep inside your tooth. With the help of modern techniques and technology, a root canal is no longer a painful process, rather it has evolved into relatively comfortable treatment that often requires just one or two visits to your endodontist.

What Causes The Root Canal Infection?

There are several reasons that can lead to root canal infection. The basic cause being the penetration of harmful bacteria into the pulp. Few of the major causes include:

  • A cracked or damaged tooth can result in infection as it opens the way for bacteria.
  • Dental decay or caries also causes the infection as it allows bacteria to penetrate deep into the pulp.
  • Tooth displacements caused by the intrusion, extrusion, or subluxation can also cause this problem.
  • If your same tooth is exposed to repeated dental treatments, root canal infections can occur.

Do You Really Need Root Canal Treatment?

Most of the dentists in Solihull and nearby cities report that patients are unaware of the symptoms of root canal infection, that makes the problem even more worse. Few of the prominent symptoms to look for include:

  • Regular pain and pulsing toothache that makes it difficult to sleep at night and is triggered by pressure or thermal insult.
  • Swelling around the infected tooth that lasts for several days or even months.
  • Tenderness in gums with some kind of lump.
  • Feeling of illness and uneasiness, sometimes accompanied by fever.

If you have any of the above symptoms, it’s better to visit your dentist and take immediate actions to avoid any further damage.

How A Root Canal Is Performed?

The complete procedure of treatment could be divided into four steps and is distributed over two or three visits.

  • X-Rays: The very first step in to confirm that you really need the treatment. Several x-rays are performed to examine the status and severity of the problem. Once your dentist is sure that you need a root canal, he begins with the procedure.
  • Anesthesia: As the process could be really painful, the dentist administers local anesthesia to the infected tooth, in order to numb the area around the tooth. This makes the further process almost painless for the patient.
  • Pulpectomy: Next step is removing the pulp from the infected teeth. With the help of a small drill, an opening is made on the top of your tooth and the diseased pulp is removed with the help of files. This is followed by irrigating your mouth with water and antimicrobial solution to remove any remaining pulp and kill the bacterias.
  • Filling: After the infected tooth is well cleaned, it is sealed with gutta-percha, a rubber-like substance and the opening is closed using the teeth cement. This ensures that no harmful substances go inside your treated tooth while the permanent crown builds up.

Taking Care After The Treatment:

Once the procedure is done, you need to take great care of your tooth to avoid any further damage. Although root canals have a high success rate, precautions are necessary to ensure long lasting results.

  • Visit your dentist regularly even after the treatment for routine checkups and examinations.
  • Make a habit of brushing twice a day regularly with a toothpaste recommended by your dentist. Good dental care is must to avoid any future problems.
  • Take great care of your eating habits and avoid chewing hard food items.

With proper treatment and after procedure care, a root canal can be really helpful to treat those painful tooth issues and enjoy a healthy and happy smile.