Root canal treatment is performed to save decayed or injured teeth which would otherwise need to be extracted due to infection of the blood vessels and nerves (collectively known as the pulp) found inside them
The infection of the pulp can lead to an abscess which usually develops at the tip of the root causing swelling.
Root canal treatment is a complicated procedure that involves both dexterity and skill. The root canal dentist locally anaesthetizes the area of the infected tooth. A clamp is placed over the tooth, and a rubber dam is spread over the clamp to isolate the tooth and prepare it for the procedure.
The root canal dentist makes a tiny hole through the enamel and dentin, and into the pulp. The pulp is then taken out with minute stainless steel files of increasing diameter. Once all the pulp has been taken out, the inside walls of the roots are shaped. Nickel/Titanium files attached to a slow speed drill can help in shaping the canals. During the operation, irrigants such as sodium hypochloride and a compound containing ethylenediamine-tetraacetate (EDTA) are used to kill both remaining pulp tissue and bacteria within the roots, and take out dentin shavings left over after filing.
Once the root canal dentist removes the pulp and shapes the inside of the roots, the canal is dried with paper cones. The canal is then filled with gutta-percha. Gutta-percha is a purified form of Mazer Wood Trees indigenous to Indonesia and Malaysia that is combined with zinc oxide and other substances to make the rubbery dental filling that is placed into the tooth roots. The Gutta-percha is then cemented into the roots with a sealer. The objective of the filling procedure is to tightly seal off the tooth against bacteria.
Root canal therapy is normally not painful. With the effective use of anesthesia and modern methods, most root canal treatments can be done in a single one hour visit. A treated tooth will be sensitive for a few days after therapy, and your root canal dentist can prescribe you medication to relieve the pain. Furthermore, you should avoid eating on the side of the mouth that has the root canal for a few days.