Root Canal Treatment
Root canal treatment is a means of saving a tooth that has been damaged by deep decay, breakage, or infection.
The purpose of treatment is to restore the tooth to good health so that it can function properly inside your mouth. An endodontist is a specialist in root canal treatment.
Why should a tooth need to be root treated?
Deep inside every tooth is a pulp chamber and root canals that contain living tissue called the pulp. The pulp is often mistakenly referred to as the ‘nerve’, but in fact it contains a fine network of tissue fibres, nerves, and blood vessels. If a large cavity in a tooth reaches the pulp chamber, or if a tooth breaks, bacteria can reach the pulp. These bacteria damage the pulp and eventually destroy it. The root canals become infected and inevitably an abscess forms beneath the root of the tooth, in the jawbone.
How is a root canal treatment done?
The purpose of the treatment is to remove the bacteria from inside the tooth and to disinfect the root canals. This is achieved by making a small hole through the tooth into the pulp chamber, locating and measuring the root canals, then cleaning and widening them using fine instruments called files.
Once clean, the canals are filled to seal them from re-infection. In most cases an abscess will start to heal at this point.