Root canal procedures are extremely common, performed by dentists for many years to repair teeth that have become infected or badly decayed. This is an important method used by dentists to save teeth and to avoid unnecessary extractions. We take a look at what exactly root canal treatment is, when you may need it and why it won’t necessarily be painful.

What is root canal treatment?

The root canal is defined as the pulp cavity in the root of the tooth. Root canal treatment (RCT) is a treatment sequence for the infected pulp of a tooth. The treatment intends to eliminate infection of the tooth.

During RCT the nerve is removed from the roots of the tooth. The tooth is then disinfected and filled with a thermoplastic material called Guttapercha. After RCT is performed the tooth will need to be re-built and crowned.

When is root canal treatment needed?

Root canal treatment (RCT) is performed on teeth which are abscessed (draining infection or swollen), acutely painful, where the decay has reached the nerve chamber, or the tooth is broken and needs a post placed to be able to fix it. It is performed to remove the inflamed and infected pulp from the inside of a tooth.

Will it be painful?

Many patients worry that root canal treatment will be painful. But new modern technologies and anesthesia options have made root canals into a mostly pain-free procedure. Today’s patients are more than 6 times as likely to describe root canal treatment as a painless experience than patients who have a tooth removed.

One of the biggest benefits of root canal treatment is that it gets rid of pain and infection in the mouth. The root canal relieves pressure from inflammation in the pulp of the tooth. Within a day or two after treatment, patients can get back to living their lives, without tooth pain.

What about tooth extraction?

You should consider the advantages and benefits of root canal treatment against the relative drawbacks of tooth extraction. Of course, there often comes a time when patients must consider the possibility that extracting a tooth is the best way to go, but through root canal treatment, patients can preserve their natural teeth for as long as possible.