Learn About the Root Canal Procedure and Its Alternatives

Have you ever heard about the term root canal? If you visited dentist regularly, you may know about this term. People who have severe tooth decay problems undergo this procedure to repair the tooth. Before taking this procedure, plenty of important things one needs to understand. To get complete insight about a root canal, keep reading this post!

What is a root canal procedure?

Root Canal Procedure

NY Dental Surgeons prefer a root canal to a patient who has a badly decayed or infected tooth. This treatment used to repair and save the decayed or infected tooth. This treatment is quite painful. At the time of root canal procedure, the pulp and nerve removed as well as the inside of the tooth are thoroughly cleaned and sealed.

If you failed to get this treatment on time, the tissue surrounding the tooth will tend to become infected. It leads to the formation of blister, swelling, and wound.Generally, this term is used to describe the natural cavity present within the center of the tooth. Within the root canal, the pulp or pulp chamber is the softer area.

The nerve of the tooth never lies within the root canal, and it is not vital to the tooth’s function and health after the tooth has emerged via the gums. Sensory is the only function of the nerve to offer the sensation of hot and cold. Therefore, either the presence orabsence of the nerve never affects the regular functioning of the tooth.

Reasons to remove tooth pulp

If you have damaged pulp or tooth’s nerve tissue, then it tends to break down and then bacteria start to multiply within the pulp chamber. The presence of bacteria and other decayed debris can cause the abscessed tooth or infection. Usually, the abscess is the pus-filled pocket, which forms at the end of the tooth roots.

It occurs once the infection spreads all the way to the end of the roots of the tooth. Additionally, the infection in the root canal can cause bone loss around the tip of the root, swelling, which may spread to other areas of head, neck, or face, and drainage issues extending outward from the root. 10 Reasons Why Dental and Oral Health Is Important.

What damages tooth’s pulp and nerve firstly

In general, a tooth’s pulp and nerve become inflamed, infected, or irritated because of the following conditions.

  • Deep decay
  • Large fillings
  • Repeated dental procedures on the tooth
  • Trauma to the face
  • A chip or crack in the tooth

Signs indicate that root canal is required

Below mentioned are the important signs, which tell you to undergo root canal procedure.

  • Severe toothache pain upon applying pressure or chewing
  • Discoloration of the tooth
  • Prolonged sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures
  • Tenderness and swelling in nearby gums
  • A persistent or recurring pimple on the gums

In some cases, no symptoms are present but the dentist will give you a root canal procedure for saving your tooth.

What happens during the root canal?

The root canal usually needs one or more dentist office visits and the experienced endodontist or dentist can do the procedure. An endodontist is also a dentist who specializes in the causes, prevention, diagnosis and treatment of diseases or injuries of the human dental pulp as well as the nerve of the tooth.

Based on the difficulty of root canal procedure required in the particular tooth, the choice of which kind of dentist require to perform the procedure varies. Alongside, the general dentist’s comfort level in performing the root canal also matters. Prior to the treatment, the dentists will discuss who will be best to perform the work in your case.

Here is the detailed procedure followed at the time of root canal by your dentist.

  1. Firstly, your dentist will take an X-ray to see the shape of the root canal and then determine whether there are any signs of infection in the surrounding tissue or bone.
  2. Then, they use local anesthesia to numb the area near the infected tooth. When the nerve is dead, anesthesia is not necessary. However, most of the dentists still anesthetize the area to comfort the patient.
  3. Next, dentists place the rubber dam around the tooth to keep the area dry and free of saliva for the procedure.
  4. The access hole will be drilled into the tooth. Using this hole, decayed nerve tissue, pulp along with bacteria, and related debris removed from the tooth. With the help of root canal files, the entire cleaning process is performed.
  5. The series of these files of increasing diameter placed subsequently into the access hole and then worked down the full length of a particular tooth to scrub and scrape the sides of the root canal. Periodically, dentists use sodium hypochlorite or water to flush away the debris
  6. Once the tooth is completed cleaned, it is sealed in most times. Some may wait for a week before sealing. Dentist may also put the medication inside the tooth if there is an infection to clear it.
  7. In case, the root canal is not completed on the same day, the temporary filling placed in the tooth exterior hole to keep out contaminants such as saliva and food. By the next appointment, gutta-percha (combination of sealer paste and rubber compound) used to fill tooth interior. The exterior hole is also sealed with the filling.
  8. Finally, the treatment involves further restoration of the tooth.  It is because a tooth often needs root canal has extensive decay, large filling or other weakness. Therefore, a crown or other restoration required to be placed on the tooth to protect and prevent it from breaking as well as restore its entire function.

For additional detail, you may discuss with the New York Dental Surgeon whom you work with.

Complications of root canal

  • An undetected crack in the root of the tooth
  • More than normally anticipated number of root canals in the tooth
  • Breakdown of the inner sealing material over time, which may allow bacteria to recontamination of the tooth
  • Inadequate or defective dental restoration

Cost of the root canal

The cost differs based on how severe the issue is and the tooth affected. Most dental insurance policies cover the treatment cost partially. The average estimate for a root canal without dental restoration performed by the general dentists may range from S500 – $ 1000 for incisor and $800 – $1500 for the molar. Endodontists will charge fees up to 50% higher than a general dentist.

Alternatives to the root canal

It is always better to save your natural teeth as much as possible because natural teeth let you eat a huge variety of foods essential to maintain proper nutrition. When you are in a situation and not able to save your natural teeth, you can go with the root canal procedure. Below mentioned are the best alternatives to root canal.

  • Having tooth extracted and replaced with the bridge
  • Tooth implant
  • Remove partial denture to restore chewing function as well as prevent adjacent teeth from shifting

These procedures are quite expensive and time-consuming than a root canal. Additionally, it needs additional procedures for supporting tissues and adjacent teeth.

How to prevent root canal

Root Canal

Major reasons behind the tooth nerve and its pulp become infected and inflamed are due to the repeated dental procedure, deep decay, and large fillings. Thus, you must follow good oral hygiene practices that are brushing twice a day, visiting the dentist regularly, and flossing at least once a day. This may reduce the need for the root canal.

Hope this article answers all your queries about root canal and now you can save your teeth to perfection.


Certified Digital Marketing specialist and having vast experienced in Online Digital Marketing.