The mere suggestion of root canals brings most people out into a cold sweat. Root canals play a major role in keeping our teeth alive and in our mouths. Treatment is necessary if the pulp inside your teeth becomes infected. Decay and damage cause the infection which may lead to abscesses and feeling generally unwell. Tooth removal is the only option if you don’t have root canal treatment.
Root canals are cavities in the tooth containing pulp, nerves and blood vessels. They are very good places for infections to grow and multiply. Infections cause abscesses, tiredness, toothache, swelling and feeling ill. Endodontics is another name for root canal treatment.
Root canals have the reputation for being painful dental treatment. They are just like having a normal filling and don’t leave any lasting damage. Dentists always do their best to save your teeth so if your dentist is unable to complete the treatment ask for a referral to a specialist in root canals.
What Are Root Canals?
Root canals are a noun and a verb the noun is the root canal itself while the verb affectionately describes the dental procedure. Your root canal is a cavity in the centre of your tooth containing pulp, blood vessels and nerve endings. Infections occur due to tooth damage or gum disease and make you feel very ill if left untreated. Root canal treatment is very routine and follows a set procedure.
First of all your dentist x rays the tooth to assess the extent of the infection. A local anaesthetic numbs the area to prepare for the tooth canal treatment. The dentist virtually excavates the tooth taking all of the pulp, blood vessels and tooth nerves away. This makes sure that there is no infection left in the cavity. You don’t feel pain during the procedure because of the local anaesthetic.
The important part of the treatment is filling the empty cavity to prevent further infection. Your dentist will only fill the empty root canals if there is no infection present. A putty-like substance fills all of the gaps in the tooth. The dentist fills the tooth and covers it with a temporary crown to prevent the tooth from crumbling. You will feel discomfort after the treatment which will go after a few days.
Does It Cause Trigeminal Neuralgia?
The most obvious nerves involving tooth canals are the nerves in the tooth. Removing the nerves in the tooth stops the pain. Many people worry that the treatment will damage the facial nerves.
Trigeminal neuralgia is a condition involving pain in the jaw, teeth or gums. Some people worry that root canals are the cause. A visit to the dentist ascertains if the cause of pain is due to an infection or another reason. Your dentist will not perform an unnecessary root canal treatment if the cause is not a tooth infection.
Dentists are very thorough and make sure there is no infection left to cause further damage and x rays identify the location of other nerves.