Root Canal Therapy
Root Canals in NW Calgary
Root Canal Treatments is a specific therapy for injured or necrotic pulpal tissue. Pulp tissue is the soft tissue inside the crown and roots made up of blood vessels (capillaries) and nerve endings.
The purpose of a root canal treatment is to restore your affected tooth to a comfortable state by removing the internal damaged tissue, replacing it with a soft thermal plastic filling that helps to seal off the pulp chamber from infection-causing bacteria.
Do you need a root canal? Request an appointment today.
All of our services are performed by general dentists.
What is a Root Canal For?
There are many reasons that a root canal treatment may be needed, but the most common cause is a deep cavity that allows bacteria to invade the pulp chamber. When bacteria start to infect the pulp, it creates swelling that causes painful pressure on the nerve endings. Swelling also inhibits normal circulation and prevents nourishment from entering the tooth. Without proper circulation, the blood vessels and nerve tissue eventually perish and a frank abscess can then develop.
Other causes include a fracture that exposes the pulp. Traumatic injury such as a blow to a tooth or breaking a tooth while eating may result in exposed pulp tissue. Regardless of the cause, the pulpal tissue becomes irritated, again causing swelling and circulation problems that eventually lead to extreme tooth pain. If left untreated, bone loss, pain and space infections will occur. The end result will be the premature loss of the tooth.
How is a Root Canal Performed?
The root canal procedure can be broken up into three basic parts.
- Cleaning & Shaping the Root Canals
First, your dentist makes an opening in your tooth and removes any decay. Gross debridement of any soft tissue in the tooth is carried out, resulting in the reduction of pressure from within the tooth. If an abscess is present, this initial step drains any purulent exudate from the tooth also relieving pain caused by pressure buildup.
- Filling the Root Canals
Once the soft tissue is removed from the canals, the canal walls are debrided using delicate, up-and-down motions with fine flexible files. Your dentist will then enlarge the canal system using a rotary system and nickel-titanium files. This gently cleans and prepares root canals for the canal-filling materials.
- Restoring the Tooth
Your dentist may fill the canals with tiny cone-shaped pieces of gutta-percha, which is a firm thermal plastic or rubber-like material. A sealer-cement is used to seal the filling material against the walls of the roots. After root canal treatments are complete, the clinical crown needs to be restored. A filling to replace lost tooth structure from access and decay is a minimum requirement. Ideally, a crown will be placed to provide added strength and durability against potential fracture of the remaining tooth structure. Crowns return the tooth to function and help to give it a healthy aesthetic appearance. If your tooth requires additional internal strength, some of the gutta-percha may be removed and a carbon fibre post can be placed prior to the filling and potential crown.