What is root canal or endodontic treatment? - The Community Leader and Real Estate New and Views


Teeth are made up of two anatomical parts: the crown and the root. The crown of a tooth is the top part that is exposed and visible above the gum (gingiva). It is covered with enamel, which protects the underlying dentine. The root of a tooth descends below the gum line, into the jawbone, anchoring the tooth in the mouth. Different types of teeth have a different number of roots and root formations.

Typically, incisors will have one root whereas molars may have three or four. Teeth are vital organs of the body. The living tissue in the centre of the crown is called the pulp which is enriched with nerves and blood vessels and this is where the tooth gets its nutrients to remain healthy.

When the nerve degenerates or is affected by bacteria your dentist may recommend removing the affected nerve and blood vessels to prevent further pain and damage to the bone underneath the tooth. This procedure is known as root canal treatment and is often recommended to attempt to save teeth from further damage or extraction.

The procedure consists mainly of removing the affected pulp of
the tooth as well as cleaning out any bacteria on the inside of the tooth then covering it with a protective seal. In essence, the root canal-treated seeks to preserve the healthy parts of the tooth. By removing the infected regions, it can save the original tooth, hence avoiding extraction and permanent tooth loss.

Often root canal-treated teeth, especially back chewing teeth, also require a crown to be placed over the tooth to enhance the strength and longevity of the tooth. In fact, root canal-treated teeth that are protected with a crown have a 6 x longer lifespan than root canal-treated teeth that do not have a crown.1

A dental crown is a custom-made, permanent restoration. Before insertion, a dental crown looks like a hollow, tooth-shaped ‘cap’ which is cemented onto an existing natural tooth (or onto a dental implant). Dental crowns are made out of ceramic (porcelain) which is a very strong and aesthetic material. They are seamlessly matched to the shape and colour of your existing teeth. Dental crowns will look, function and feel just like a natural tooth.

The best way to care for your teeth before or after root canal
treatment is to ensure that you carefully schedule and keep your six monthly routine examinations and cleans with your dentist to keep your teeth for the long term! Call us now on 3348 6661 or book online www.dentaloncambridge.com

1 S.A. Aquilino & D. J. Caplan (2002), Relationship between crown placement and the survival of endodontically treated teeth, The Journal of Prosthetic Dentistry, Volume 87, Issue 3, 2002, Pages 256-263, ISSN 0022-3913, https://doi.org/10.1067/mpr.2002.122014.

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