This patient developed an infection in their molar tooth and required root canal treatment to save it.
Root canal treatment (also called endodontics) is needed when the pulp inside your tooth becomes infected through tooth decay or damaged by an injury to your mouth. This infection may spread through the root canal system and could eventually lead to an abscess, causing a great deal of discomfort and possible swelling. If root canal treatment is not carried out, the tooth may need to be taken out. Root canal therapy involves the following:
- First, a local anaesthetic will be administered to ensure no discomfort is felt during treatment.
- The tooth is then isolated using a rubber dam.
- The tooth is then accessed through the top of the tooth to get to the root canal system.
- The root canal system is then filled and sealed.
- The tooth is checked at a later visit and when all the infection has cleared, the tooth is permanently filled - quite often a crown is considered with teeth that have had root canal treatment as they are at a higher risk of cracking or fracturing.
- The root canal system will then be prepared using specially made files and the canal system thoroughly cleaned out and disinfected.
Root canal treatment is a skilled and time-consuming procedure and most courses of treatment will involve two or more visits.
- Preservation of remaining healthy tooth structure.
- Prevention of infection spreading any further.
- Restoration of the tooth to its natural look and feel.