Endodontic treatment is used to treat the inside of the tooth when the “pulp”, which contains blood vessels, connective tissue, and nerves, becomes infected or inflamed. This infection or inflammation can be caused by a number of things including deep decay, tooth trauma, and repeated dental procedures on the same tooth. If left untreated, damaged pulp can be very painful and can cause an abscess to form at the tip of the root. Endodontic treatment, also referred to as “root canal therapy”, focuses on removing the infected pulp thereby ridding the tooth of infection. Fortunately, the tooth can continue to function as normal even after the pulp has been removed because tissues around the tooth continue to support it.
Contrary to popular belief, root canal treatment is not as painful as you might think. Usually the pain associated with postponing treatment is far worse than the treatment itself; relief of severe pain should be immediate following the procedure. Having root canal treatment is not much different than recieving fillings with regards to what you will experience in the chair. Your Ottawa dentist will begin by providing you with local anesthetic near the affected area to make you more comfortable during the procedure. To access the centre of the tooth where the pulp is located, the dentist will create a small opening in your tooth to expose the “root canals” of the tooth. This opening is the access point the dentist will use to enter the canals and locate the pulp using special instruments. The infected or inflamed pulp is then removed and the inside of the tooth is cleaned and sterilized. A material is used to fill the inside core of the tooth. The tooth will require a final filling or crown to reinforce its strength which ensures prevention of tooth fracture. Our dental team will provide you with post operative care instructions to ensure happy and healthy healing.