A root canal is a process in which the inner center soft tissue of a tooth, known as the pulp is removed. A pulp contains nerve tissue and blood vessels that help the tooth grow. The treatment is usually prescribed as an alternate procedure to tooth extraction, in order to save the tooth from underlying problems such as infection or dental injury.
When Is A Root Canal Needed?
A root canal is performed to remove the pulp from the tooth, keeping the tooth’s crown intact. The treatment is often prescribed by dentists if they feel that the tooth can be saved, instead of extraction, which can leads to larger complications later on.
Some of the situations where root canal is needed are:
- Dental decay where the pulp is destroyed or infected
- A chip or crack in the tooth
- The pulp is damaged due to tooth injury
Prior to the treatment, your dentist will examine the painful area and take X-rays to confirm the diagnosis. If it’s confirmed that a root canal is needed, your dentist will refer you to an endodontist.
Root Canal Procedures
There are generally 5 steps to a root canal treatment:
The first step in the procedure is your dentist will apply small amount of numbing medication on the gum area to prepare for local anesthetic to be injected. Initially, you may feel a burning sensation but this will go away quickly.
Local anesthetic is applied only to the local area and you will be awake throughout the procedures.
2. Removing The Pulp
Once your tooth and the surrounding area is numb, your dentist will start removing the pulp. This is done by making a small opening on the top of the tooth. Once the pulp and infected area is exposed, your dentist will remove it using special tools called files. The pathway of the tooth will also be cleaned to remove the infectious nerves and blood vessels.
Once the pulp has been removed, the dentist will apply topical antibiotics to the area, to ensure that the infections are gone. Once the canals are cleaned, will fill and seal the tooth with a sealer paste. An oral anti biotic may be prescribed.
4. Temporary Filling
Once the above procedures are completed, the dentist will end the procedure by filling the opening area with a temporary filling material to prevent the damage on the tooth by saliva.
5. Follow-Up Treatment & Permanent Filling
After the treatment, your gums and tooth may sore and swell, once the anesthetic wears off. Your dentist will prescribe medications to treat the pain. The condition should get better after a few days by itself. However, call the dentist if the pain doesn’t go away.
A follow-up treatment is required in order for your dentist to check if the infection is completely cleared. The dentist will also replace the temporary filling with a permanent filling. In certain cases, a dental crown might be suggested, if there’s not much of a tooth structure left.
Risks Of A Root Canal Treatment
Just like any other treatments, there are still some risks involved with a root canal treatment. For instance, sometimes the enamel of the tooth may be too frail to withstand the the treatment procedures, which could lead to the loss of the tooth.
If the infections are not fully cleared up, this can lead to the development of an abscess at the root of the tooth, which may require a tooth extraction.
How Much Does A Root Canal Cost In Bangkok?
On average, a root canal treatment costs between $200 to $500, depends on which tooth is required and the amount of treatment. The price can go up if there is a requirement of a dental crown as well.