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Understanding Modern Root Canal Treatment
Jul 2016

Previously, root canal treatments were very painful and synonymous with pain. But with local anaesthetics and modern dentistry, most people experience slight pain, if at all pain is caused with a root canal treatment. And in fact, an infected tooth or a fractured tooth may be more painful than getting a root canal treatment done.

This treatment is carried out to save a severely damaged or an infected tooth instead of extracting it. Root canal treatment not only saves the tooth but also prevents the need of replacing the tooth with either a removable denture, a bridge or a more recent option - an implant.

In the past, many or most infected, broken or fractured teeth had to be removed, but now with modern dentistry, most of these teeth can be saved, salvaged and restored to its original shape size and form, rendering it totally normal to speak, function and also look good.

Structure Of A Tooth
The pulp of the tooth or the nerve is the soft structure in the centre of the tooth, which extends till the tip of the tooth. This structure provides the blood supply, sensations and lymphatics of the tooth. If this structure is exposed, damaged or infected, the tooth becomes very sensitive and painful. The aim of the root canal treatment is to remove the pulpal structures, clean and sterilize the cavity or void now created and fill or seal the void to prevent subsequent infections.

Diagnosing The Problem
A root canal filling is done by first diagnosing and identifying the causative tooth whether it is vital or alive, degenerating, or in the process of dying or totally non-vital, or totally dead. Once the clinician has identified and diagnosed the problem, he then proceeds to anaesthetize the patient.