Root Canal treatment is a sequence used to treat the infected pulp tissue within the centre of the tooth. A root canal infection is caused by bacteria, commonly as a result of tooth decay, leaking fillings and damage to teeth asa a result of trauma, such as a knock or a fall.
The bacteria and the substances they produce will eventually pass through the end of the root where blood vessels and nerves enter, causing swelling of the tissues. This can make your tooth painful and in some cases cause a swelling of the face, known as a dental abscess.
The bacteria needs to be removed to treat the infection, this can be done by either removal of the tooth (extraction), or by treating the infection in the root canal system (root canal treatment). Once the bac teria has been removed the root canal system will be filled. Molar and premolar teeth should then be protected with a crown which covers the cusps of the tooth. This is beacause these teeth are prone to high stresses furing function and will most certainly frecture in the furure without cuspal coverage. Anterior teeth do not typically require crowns following root canal treatment unless there has been extensive damage from decay or for improving their appearance. I fthe tooth is not perfectly sealed, the root canal may leak eventually causing failure of the root canal treatment.
In most cases the inflamed tissue at the end of the tooth will heal naturally. Root canal treatment is usually successful in 90% of cases and treated teeth can survive for up to 10 years.