The most common reason for a root canal filling is that bacteria have come all the way to the nerve in the tooth. It causes inflammation of the gum that can cause pain and lasting damage. In order for the inflammation to disappear, we need to make a so-called root canal filling.
Although most root canals are due to caries that have not been treated, there can be other causes of root canals:
- Teeth with deep fillings that have damaged the nerve
- Teeth that have been exposed to strokes and subsequent bacteria that have damaged the nerve
- Teeth that should get a crown or bridge
What is root canal filling?
A root canal replaces inflamed tooth marrow tissue in the root canal of a tooth. When we root fill a tooth, it is because there has been a tooth inflammation in the root canal. Then the most important thing is to get rid of the infection.
To treat the infection, we must drill through the crown of the tooth into the tooth margin, and then remove the bacteria in the root canal. To prevent a new infection from occurring, we must make a bacteria-tight root filling.
Signs of need for root filling
Many people find that they have inflammation of the tooth marrow only when they get pain. If you get acute gingivitis, you will have no doubt that something is wrong; you will experience an intense toothache!
A chronic inflammation of the gums can be more difficult to detect. You may be without symptoms and pain even if there has been an infection around the root tip of the tooth. However, this can be seen on an X-ray. Eventually you will probably also experience some tenderness and pain in the area.
How a root canal is done
When we root fill a tooth, it is crucial that we prevent new bacteria from entering during the treatment. This means that we make the treatment aseptic by isolating the tooth that is root-filled from the other teeth. We also use only disinfected instruments. Once we have cleaned the root canal, we rinse it with bactericidal liquid.
In the root filling itself, we usually use a rubbery material called gutta-percha.
After the root filling is finished, we restore the tooth with a filling or a crown.
Does it hurt to take root?
Many people associate root canal filling with great pain. It is in many ways a myth. With today's modern aids and various forms of anesthesia, root canal filling is not necessarily synonymous with great discomfort. In most cases, regular local anesthesia is sufficient. Sometimes we have to try different ways to anesthetize the tooth. All decisions are made in consultation with you and we only use the latest in pain relief and technology.
If you are allergic to anesthesia, have severe dental fear or injection fear, you can be anesthetized when we carry out the root canal.
Pain and problems after root canal filling
It is quite common to get some pain after a root canal. Usually this passes after a short time. If you feel the need for pain relief, you can use ibuprofen or paracetamol. Sometimes the pain does not go away. Then we must consider doing the root filling again, removing the root tip or removing the tooth completely.
Alternative to root filling
If you have inflammation in the tooth marrow tissue of a tooth, and do not perform a root canal filling, you risk having to pull the tooth. Many people are reluctant to root fill a tooth as it can be painful and time consuming. Still, for most people it is much better than removing the tooth.
Although a root-filled tooth is somewhat weaker than originally, they work well enough for most people.
A root-filled tooth can, if desired, be reinforced with a dental crown.
What does a root canal cost?
Our different teeth have different numbers of root canals. Therefore, it takes longer to root fill a grinder, which has several channels, than a front tooth that usually has only one root channel. If you are going to root-fill a grinder, it means that you will probably have to visit us several times to complete the treatment. Thus, the price becomes somewhat higher. If you also need a crown or filling, this is extra.