You have probably heard the term “root canal” before. Unfortunately, many people often say it with an accompanying cringe, often alluding to it when they are talking about things they would rather not do.
This negative idea about root canal is a product of popular media and a lack of understanding about what happens during the procedure, let alone what it aims to help the patient with.
To help you make up your mind about whether you should get a root canal treatment here in Hertfordshire, here are answers to a couple of common questions.
What leads to the need for a root canal?
Your tooth has a white layer called enamel; it is what you see when you check your teeth in the mirror. Under that layer is another layer, the dentin, which is hard. Under the dentin is the pulp, which helps the root grow while the tooth is still developing.
The pulp contains connective tissues, blood vessels and nerves to accomplish its objective. When the tooth fully grows, it survives even without the help of the pulp because the tissues around it continue nourishing it.
When the tooth becomes badly decayed, the decay may reach the pulp, inflaming it and eventually leading to infection. The infection may cause an abscess to form in your gum. This is why a filling alone cannot solve the problem.
You may think the tooth should just undergo extraction, and get it over with. But that means you lose the tooth and have to go through another process, which is that of replacing it.
How does root canal solve the problem?
A root canal does not involve removing the tooth itself, so in essence, it is an alternative to extraction. It simply removes the infected or inflamed pulp. After that, the dentist thoroughly cleans the tooth and disinfects it thoroughly. The dentist uses gutta-percha – a rubber-like material –to fill and seal the hole.
Your dentist may use crowns or fillings to restore the tooth and keep it protected against further damage.
A root canal does not cause pain; it gets rid of it. This is what you should keep in mind when your dentist suggests the treatment.