Root canal treatment (RCT)
A root canal treatment (RCT) consists of removing the dental pulp, cleaning and shaping the canal, and then sealing it with a material called Gutta percha and a cement.
This treatment may require more than one visit. This will depend on the degree of pulpal damage, as well as the morphology of the canals: some teeth have two, three, or even four canals, which may render treatment longer and more complicated. The infection may have spread to the underlying bone, which would cause an abscess. Post-operative sensitivity of up to 1-2 weeks should be expected.
An endodontically-treated tooth is more fragile than a non-endodontically-treated tooth. It is for this reason that we recommended a final ceramic restoration once RCT is completed. Posterior teeth should be crowned since a lot of pressure is exerted on these teeth during mastication. Before crowning the tooth, it must first be built up in composite. In post cases, there is not enough remaining tooth structure and a post is also necessary to help hold onto the restoration.
RCT allows patients to maintain their natural dentition, thus avoiding the need for implants, bridges or partials. RCT is always a better option than extracting the tooth when this is possible. By keeping your natural tooth, you avoid the need to alter neighbouring teeth as well as avoiding deformation of the dental arch.