Teeth are vital structures. They have nerve and blood supply like every other part of the body. The nerve and blood supply of the tooth sits in delicate canals within the tooth and is called the "pulp". Dental decay or trauma can cause the pulp to be irritated, inflamed and even die within the tooth. The injury to the pulp manifests itself as sensitivity, pain, infections and abscesses. A root canal treatment can save a tooth in this condition.
Click on this image to see healthy and diseased pulp.
Root canal treatment aims to remove the affected pulp, clean the canals, resolve the infection by removing the bacteria and then fill the space with a suitable material ensuring the area will not be reinfected. A root canal treatment often takes 2-3 visits, allowing the tooth and the bone around the tooth to be healed before completion.
At Torrensville Dental Care fillings are done with the aim of reducing the risk of the tooth needing a root canal treatment. In teeth, with larger cavities, layers of medications and materials are placed to ensure the pulp has a chance to heal itself. If the damage is beyond repair and a root canal is indicated, this is done using a rubber dam and digital radiography making sure an accurate and long lasting result is obtained.
A root canal treated tooth is a "non-vital" tooth that no longer has its flexibility and is significantly more brittle. Therefore, a crown is often recommended on a root canal treated tooth to keep it together and prevent if from fractures. Another advantage of a crown is the improvement of the aesthetics of the tooth. Root canal treated tooth can become darker over time. Ceramic crowns can mask that discolouration effectively.