Every tooth has two sections: a crown, the visible part of the tooth above the gum line, and one or more roots, which anchor the teeth within the jaw. Each tooth has three basic layers: an outer layer of hard enamel (which protects the ‘crown’) or cementum (which covers the ‘root’), a middle layer that is softer, called the ‘dentin’, and the inside of the tooth called the ‘pulp’.
The ‘pulp’ is living tissue containing nerves, blood vessels, and connective tissue. The ‘pulp’ is typically located in the center of the tooth, ie center of the ‘crown’ and then extends towards the tip of the tooth, ie through the ‘root’ through a canal, called the ‘pulpal canal’.
There are many reasons for which the ‘pulp’ can get irritated, inflamed, or infected. The most common cause is ‘tooth decay’ or ‘dental caries’, which when it starts at the enamel and spreads through the dentin, if not treated (by a ‘dental filling’) can extend further in to the tooth and hit the ‘pulp’.
When the dental decay touches/reaches the pulp, it’s often too late to save the ‘pulp’, which in turn gets inflamed and eventually dies. When this gets worse, it causes an infection under and around the tip of the root. When tooth pulp is infected or dying, it can’t be restored.
Without treatment, tooth extraction is often the option. An infection in the pulp can spread to the gum tissue, the jawbone, and other parts of the body.
A root canal procedure is intended to save a tooth (to save the crown and root parts of the tooth). It can prevent tooth loss and prevent a more widespread infection. This is done by removing the infected pulp tissue, cleaning up the canal that houses the ‘pulp’ and then filling these canals with a definitive material.
Even with the protective layers surrounding the ‘pulp’, the tooth pulp is vulnerable to infection and injury:
A root canal procedure is relatively straightforward. If you are anxious about the procedure, your dentist can recommend sedations options.
A tooth that needs root canal treatment might be symptom-free, but any of these symptoms are strong indications that the pulp has suffered infection or injury:
A root canal is typically performed by specialist called an ‘Endodontist’ who is a dentist who has undergone 3 years of additional training in root canal treatment. At Dental Lavelle, we have 2 endodontists. Sometimes, with front teeth (that have a well defined single straight forward canal) can be treated by experienced General Dentists as well.
Call your dentist immediately if you have any symptoms of pulp infection or injury. Prompt endodontic treatment can relieve tooth pain and prevent further infection. And, with proper dental care and regular checkups, your restored tooth can last a lifetime.
#120 Lavelle Road, Bengaluru 560001 | Ph: 080-41121314 | www.dentallavelle.com
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The health and safety of our community is our highest priority. As the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to spread across the country, we would like to share some of the actions we are taking to help protect our patients and our employees.
Dental Lavelle follows strict guidelines for Infection Control in Dental Healthcare settings as recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), USA. In the next few days, we will be sharing a detailed article on our current sterilization and disinfection protocol to help explain and reassure our patients of our highest level of care currently being implemented. As the situation on COVID-19 continues to evolve, we will closely monitor guidance from American Dental Association, CDC, the World Health Organization (WHO), Indian Dental Association and local health officials around the country. We will continue to rely on their recommendations and expertise to inform us for implementing protocol.
As a result, we are increasing the frequency and rigor of cleaning, disinfection and sanitization at Dental Lavelle.
We’re also continuing to do all we can to make sure you feel safe, comfortable and welcome.
All of us at Dental Lavelle understand that this issue is a cause for concern to many, and we offer our deepest sympathies to those who have been affected. Rest assured that as circumstances continue to develop, we will remain committed to the health and well-being of our patients, customers, employees, doctors and communities.