Root Canal Treatment


DESCRIPTION
A root canal treatment is a dental procedure performed to remove damaged pulp tissue, the soft tissue inside the tooth that contains nerves, blood vessels, and connective tissue, by treating the infections and preserving the teeth. The symptoms of Pulpal damage may include Tooth pain while chewing, headache, oversensitivity of the teeth wit hot or cold drinks, facial swelling etc. A root canal treatment is done when the patient suffers from aggressive tooth decay or cavity, gum disease, or any external trauma which may have caused damage to the sensitive nerve tissue within the tooth. If Pupal damage is not treated at time, there can be complications like destruction of underlying bone tissue at the root of the mouth which may require tooth extraction. Sometimes, the infection can spread to adjacent teeth and could result in blood poisoning, fever, swelling in the face and neck, and a general feeling of unwell.


THE PROCESS
Before Root Canal Treatment, the dentist carefully examines the patient’s teeth. The patient may also undergo some tests which indicate his teeth sensitivity like electric pulp test, cold test, hot test, percussion tests. Root canal treatment requires a series of appointments to complete.

First appointment

  • The area around the tooth is numbed.
  • A small hole is drilled through crown and the root canal is measured using a X-ray or an electric device called apex locator.
  • The infected pulp tissue is removed and the pulp chamber and root canal are cleaned out.
  • The pulp chamber is slightly enlarged and then disinfected.
  • The tooth is temporary sealed and the patient is given antibiotics to be taken.

Next appointment

  • The dentists clarifies that there is no remaining infection and fills the canals with gutta-percha (An inert latex-like substance used for filling root canals).
  • The access opening is either filled with cement or a crown is fabricated and placed on it.


DURATION OF THE PROCESS
The treatment is done in two phases in two days.


HOSPITALIZATION PERIOD
The patient needn’t be hospitalized for the procedure. However, he/she is required to visit the doctor/dentist simultaneously for two days for the completion of the procedure.


TIME SPAN FOR RECOVERY
The patients, who choose to perform root canal treatment abroad, can return to their home country immediately after the procedure.


AFTERCARE GUIDELINES
  • The patient must avoid alcoholic beverages 48 hours after the treatment.
  • The patient must not smoke for 72 hours after root canal therapy
  • The patient may place ice compresses for 15-20 minutes on the area to lessen pain or swelling
  • The patient must brush the teeth or rinse the mouth 2 to 3 times every day especially after meals.
  • The patient must avoid chewing on the affected side for the first few days following treatment.
  • The patient must eat soft foods for a day or two after the first root canal visit.
  • The patient must drink 6 to 8 glasses of liquid each day.
  • The patient must keep sugary snacks to a minimum.
  • The patient must limit the amount of caffeine in drinks, such as coffee, tea, and soda.
  • The patient must not bend over or lift anything heavy for 2 to 3 days if this causes pain.
  • A follow-up appointment should be scheduled with the dentist for six months after treatment to make sure the tooth and surrounding structures are healthy.
  • The patient must attend the dentist for regular check-ups.


THE RISKS
  • Re treatment required due to

          - Diseased canal offshoots that went undetected

          - Inert filling that does not completely seal off the roots from bacteria
          - Damage to the tooth during the procedure
          - Tooth fractures between or within the roots
          - Fracturing of a canal filing instrument used
  • Infection due to a canal not being cleaned or filled completely.
  • Infection due to a canal not being cleaned or filled at all, if the X-ray did not show all of a tooth's canals.

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