FAQs related to Root Canal Treatment


It is always better to understand you about root canal treatment. So you can basically know what is root canal treatment? And so we are here to help you out. Today we are going to discuss some questions or queries related to “Root Canal Treatment”. Let’s get started.

Here are some questions related to root canal treatment or RCT or endodontic treatment:

What is root canal treatment (RCT) or endodontic treatment?

Root canal treatment (RCT) or endodontic treatment is the treatment related to the tooth pulp. Now. What is tooth pulp? So, tooth pulp is the innermost portion of the tooth. The tooth is having enamel, dentin and then pulp. Tooth pulp contains blood vessels and nerves inside. Tooth pulp is also termed as tooth nerve in laymen word. Now, when this tooth pulp gets infected due to decayed tooth, infected gums, trauma or any other reasons and if you want to save your tooth if possible then you have only one option and that is root canal treatment. Root canal treatment consists of removing of tooth pulp, cleaning the canal and fill it with the root canal filling materials.

What are the causes that lead to the tooth pulp to die or infected that requires root canal treatment?

Causes for tooth pulp to die or infected are:

  • Severely or grossly decayed tooth
  • Direct trauma to the tooth
  • Deeply restored tooth with tooth filling materials
  • Crack in the tooth or Cracked Tooth Syndrome
  • Infected gums or periodontium
  • Attrition or abrasion of the tooth
  • A person going in high altitude (10,000 ft. and more) where the pressure is low such as traveling in the plane or in a decompression chamber. This change in pressure can cause damage to the pulp known as Barodontalgia or Aerodontalgia.
  • Injuries from high-speed dental instrument used to remove decayed portion of the tooth
  • Acid erosion

What are the symptoms of died or infected tooth pulp?

There is no symptom present in died tooth pulp because the nerves in the pulp are already necrosed and are not going to give any stimuli. But infected tooth pulp gives the symptoms due to living nerve tissues insides. They are:

  • Pain on having cold or hot. This pain can be from mild to severe.
  • Pain on chewing the food. This pain can also be from mild to severe.

What are the types of pain in infected tooth pulp?

The pain may vary from person to person depending on the severity of the tooth infection and tooth vascularity. The pain can be of:

  • Sharp shooting pain
  • Prolonged pain
  • Constant and severe pain
  • Dull pain

What are the diagnostic aids require for root canal treatment?

Your dentist or endodontist will take an IOPA (Intra-oral Peri-apical) radiograph, which is mandatory to see the condition of one or two teeth. If your dentist or endodontist may tell you to go for OPG (Orthopantomogram) to evaluate multiple infected teeth and reducing exposure to the patient from harmful x-rays. Some surgical root canal treatment such as Apicectomy may require latest diagnostic aid in dentistry that is CBCT (Cone Beam Computed Tomography).

Is root canal treatment painful?

When you heard of root canal treatment and you just got thinking about the pain. But keep in mind due to high skill, knowledge and latest technologies now era of root canal treatment is different. You only feel pain when your dentist or endodontist give you an anesthesia. Otherwise, rest of the producer is painless. Even nowadays you can eliminate this small pain, thanks to “Laser Root Canal Treatment”. But laser root canal treatment is costly than the conventional one.

Who can best treat the case of root canal treatment?

There are many branches in dentistry and one of them is Endodontics. Endodontics is the branch of dentistry which deals with diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of the problems related to the tooth pulp. Doctor having the master in this field is known as Endodontist. The endodontist is the person who can best handle the root canal treatment cases. But a well skilled and knowledgeable general dentist can also well perform root canal treatment.

What are the chemical, medicaments and filling materials used in the root canal treatment (RCT)?

Chemicals used in the root canal treatment

  • Sodium Hypochlorite
  • EDTA (Ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid)
  • Chlorhexidine Digluconate
  • MTAD (Tetracycline isomer + Citric acid + Detergent)

Medicaments used in the root canal treatment

  • Calcium Hydroxide
  • Chlorhexidine Digluconate gel

Filling material used in the root canal treatment

  • Gutta-percha
  • Silver cones (outdated, not in use now)
  • Resilon (rarely used)

Root canal treated tooth requires cap (crown) over it or not?

Requiring cap or crown over RC treated tooth depends upon various factors such as, how much tooth loss is there? Are the biting forces are more on RC treated tooth? How much is sound tooth structure left after root canal treatment? All these factors need to be considered for giving tooth crown. But it is advisable to have a crown or cap over the root canal treated tooth to save the tooth for a longer time.

What is core build up in root canal treatment and why core build up is necessary?

In some cases, where the natural tooth portion (crown portion) is almost gone may requires some support to hold the tooth filling material. This support can be provided by core build up.

Will root canal treated tooth get discolored in future?

Some cases show discoloration in the RC treated tooth that may require Tooth Bleaching. Whereas in some cases, the tooth filling material over the RC treated tooth gets discolored. This can be corrected by replacing the tooth filling material.

I don’t want to go for root canal treatment then what are the other options?

If you don’t want to go for RCT then you are left with only one choice that is tooth extraction or tooth removal. After tooth extraction you have two choices left, you can go for either Tooth Bridge or Dental Bridge with some damage to the adjacent natural teeth or you can go for Tooth Implants or Dental Implants.

What is the success rate of the RCT?

If root canal treatment is performed well then the success rate is from 90% to 95% depending on the cases. Some failed conventional root canal treatment can retreat with surgical root canal treatment that is Apicoectomy. Well maintained oral hygiene, proper follow-up and regular six-month dental check-up show good prognosis.

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