Root canals, sometimes referred to as root fillings, are usually performed when a tooth has a particularly large cavity in it that's reached as far as the nerve chamber. You might also need a root canal treatment if a tooth breaks, exposing the nerve, as when this level of damage occurs the nerve can become infected and die - this then needs to be removed so the space can be filled.
Alternative options to root canals include bridges, dentures and implants, but a root canal will allow you to keep your tooth without the need for an extraction.
Root canal explained
Root canals in depth
When the nerve of a tooth is exposed and becomes infected, not only can the nerve die, but an abscess can develop too. If left unattended, the infection can spread, and can be very painful!
How is root canal treatment carried out?
If you're in need of a root canal treatment, this will usually be performed over two appointments. The process is usually as follows:
- You'll receive a local anaesthetic throughout this process to ensure you're not in pain.
- Your dentist will make a small hole in your tooth to obtain access to the nerve chamber. This will enable the area to be cleared of bacteria, as well as any dying tissue to be removed.
- Once this clean has been performed, your dentist will fill the canal, ensuring it is protected from any further infections.
- You might experience a little discomfort once this has been completed, but following treatment the infection should begin to clear, leaving you free from pain.
To find out more about the dental treatments available through Bupa Dental Care find your local practice and get in touch with us today.