Also known as the pulp, a root canal is a part of your tooth. Containing the blood vessels, nerve tissue, and a variety of cells, it helps to give the teeth vital nutrients while providing moisture to surrounding tissue.
Being told you need to undergo root canal treatment can be daunting. To help give you an idea of what to expect, below you’ll discover everything you need to know about this common treatment.
What is root canal treatment?
Root canal treatment is referred to as endodontic therapy, and it is performed in three different steps.
The first step is to clean out the root canal. This is done by drilling into the tooth and removing everything inside the root canal with tiny files. The procedure is performed while the patient is under local anaesthetic.
Once the root canal has been cleaned, the next step is to fill it. The tooth will be shaped and decontaminated, then filled with material like rubber. An adhesive cement helps to completely seal the canal. A temporary filling will be put in and the patient will need to avoid biting or chewing on the tooth.
After a few days allowing the tooth to settle, another appointment will be arranged to fit a filling or crown over the tooth. This will help strengthen the tooth and keep it in place.
Will root canal treatment hurt?
The most common question patients have when they discover they need root canal treatment is whether it will be painful. While you may experience some pressure or discomfort, the procedure itself does not cause any pain.
If you do feel slight pain, it is typically down to the infection not the treatment.
As local anaesthetic is provided, you shouldn’t feel pain during the procedure. However, as it wears off you may experience tenderness in the area. This can usually be controlled with over-the-counter painkillers. If they don’t, you can ask for stronger painkillers to be prescribed.
Treatment for nervous patients
Many patients are understandably nervous about undergoing root canal treatment. If the mere thought of visiting the dentist makes you anxious, you certainly aren’t alone. However, help is available, and those who need it can choose to be sedated during the procedure.
At CK Dental, we have a new dentist who is a highly skilled Endodontics specialist. Dr Chris Hugh has become a much valued member of the team. His natural friendly and calming nature helps to put even the most nervous of patients at ease.
Book a consultation with Dr Chris Hugh today to learn more about the procedure and discuss sedation options if needed.