Root canal treatment, also known as endodontics, is needed when the pulp inside the tooth becomes infected. The treatment involves removing infected pulp, preventing the infection from spreading and can help save a tooth that may otherwise have to be extracted.
The pulp is made up of soft tissue, including nerves and blood vessels, and extends from the crown to the tips of the root. The pulp can become infected due to decay, a deep filling or trauma to the tooth. Symptoms can include pain, increased sensitivity to temperature, discolouration, a metallic taste, gum tenderness or swelling.
Why is having root canal treatment important?
Removing the infected pulp will save the tooth from being extracted. While removing an infected tooth will relieve toothache, it can cause problems further down the line as you’ll need to replace the tooth. Having root canal not only saves the tooth and removes any toothache, it also saves you money that you would need to spend on replacing the tooth.
The last thing you want is for the infection to spread. Removing the pulp removes the source so your mouth is infection-free.
If this treatment has been carried out on a posterior tooth, we will need to rebuild the tooth after the treatment using a crown or cast restoration as recommended by the current evidence based research. Your tooth will look and feel as good as new.
How long does a treated tooth last?
If looked after properly, with regular brushing and flossing, your root canal treated tooth should stay trouble-free and provide a long lasting repair. Even though the pulp has been removed, the tooth will stay intact because the canals have been sealed to prevent re-infection. Regular check-ups are also recommended so any problems can be detected early.