What is root canal?

Root canals are the specialised structure within the tooth in which the pulp, nerve and the blood vessels lie to give support to the tooth. No of the canal in the tooth may vary according to the type of tooth. All the anterior tooth e.g. Incisor to Canine generally have single canal within its root, but in the posterior number of the canal may be multiple in number.

Root canal treatment?

A root canal is a treatment used to repair and save a tooth that is badly decayed or becomes infected. During a root canal procedure, the nerve and pulp are removed and the inside of the tooth is cleaned and sealed. Without treatment, the tissue surrounding the tooth will become infected and abscesses may form.

Need for Root canal treatment

When tooth severely damaged by decay or fracture of the tooth, it allows bacteria to go inside and multiply. The bacteria and other decayed debris can cause an infection or abscess tooth. An abscess is the accumulation of pus around the tooth. Collection of pus can lead to swelling of the jaw and causes pain.

So, to reduce the chances to grow the bacteria, it is important to remove all the infection and infected tooth structure.

Endodontic (Root Canal) Treatment


Endodontic treatment or root canal treatment starts with the diagnostic procedure, radiograph or x-ray which give the accurate root length. This first radiographic tooth length gives the general idea of to the working length on which dentist starts the treatment.Local anesthesia is administered via injections to numb the tooth to be treated and the surrounding tissues. If the pulp in a tooth is acutely inflamed, and therefore very painful, it may take a while to get it numb, but your dentist will not start the treatment until it gets numb.

Small access cavity will be prepared through the biting surface to get access to the pulp chamber and root canal.

Now, according to shape and size of the canal, dentist choose the Endodontic files and other specialized instruments to remove dead and infected pulp, and for cleaning and shaping (BMP) of the canal. Once the pulp, along with the nerves contained in it, is removed, the tooth itself can no longer feel pain.The canals are disinfected with antiseptic and antibacterial solutions.

Root canal fillings materials are selected that will exactly fit into the freshly prepared canals. Usually, a rubber-like material called gutta-percha is used to fill the canal space. It is a thermoplastic material, there are several techniques to fill the canal with the material, most widely used and practiced technique is  Lateral compaction technique which literally is heated and then compressed into and against the walls of the root canals to seal them.


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