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What exactly is a Root Canal?


What is Root Canal

Do your knees quake at the thought of a “root canal”? Does the pain come to your mind? But are you aware of what a “root canal” really is?

A “root canal” is not a treatment, but a part of your tooth. A root canal is a hollow section of your tooth that contains the blood vessels, nerve tissue and other cells, also known as pulp.

Your tooth consists of roots and crowns. A crown is above your gum, whereas the roots are under it. The roots keep your tooth attached to the jawbone.

Inside your crown and root is the pulp. Your pulp nourishes your tooth and keeps the surrounding material hydrated. There are also nerves present in your pulp which sense your hot and cold temperatures as pain.

The name of the dental treatment commonly known as a “root canal” is actually endodontic therapy meaning “inside the tooth.”

However, people use “root canal” commonly used to talk about the procedure.

Steps in a Root Canal

Root Canal Treatment Image

You will get root canal treatment in 3 steps, and it takes between 1 to 3 sessions to complete.

Step:1 Cleaning


Your dentist will remove everything that is inside your root canal after giving you local anaesthesia. The dentist will make a small hole on the surface of the tooth to access and remove dead pulp tissue with very small tools.

Step:2 Filling


Your dentist will then clean, shape and decontaminates the hollow part, with the help of irrigation solutions and tiny tools. After that, your tooth is filled with a rubber-like material, with an adhesive cement to close your canals completely.

After root canal treatment, your tooth is dead. You will no longer feel any pain in the tooth as the nerve tissue has been taken out, and your infection eliminated.


Step: 3 Adding a crown


However, your tooth is now more fragile than before. A tooth without a pulp receives its nourishment from the ligament that keeps the tooth attached to the bone. Even though this supply is enough, after some time, your tooth will become brittle, so a crown offers more protection.

Until a crown is added, you should not chew or bite on the tooth. You can use your tooth as before once your dentist adds the crown.

Root canal treatment usually takes one appointment; however, if you have, multi-canals, curved canals or more infections, it could take 1 or 2 extra appointments.

When should you consider a Root Canal?


These are some conditions when you should consider going for a root canal:

  • You feel persistent pain while drinking and eating

  • Cracked or chipped tooth due to eating hard foods

  • Tooth sensitivity to hot or cold drinks

  • Swollen gums due to inflammations under the surface

  • Dark discolouration of your tooth due to poor hygiene

  • Long-lasting sensitivity because of damaged root

  • Deep decay within the base of your tooth or a cavity

Complications in a Root Canal

Complications can occur like in some root canals:

  • Sometimes the dentist only determines 3 root canals in a tooth that has 4. If one of your canals is left untreated, the infection may continue and spread inside the bone.

  • Your dentist should also make sure that the filling material goes deep into the canal, to fill it up. If your root canal is not properly closed, the infection may come back.

  • During your procedure, the tooth’s root might crack, or the instruments can break inside your canal. This makes it difficult to fill the tooth properly.

If these complications occur, your specialist might try to correct the issue and finish the root canal.


To avoid any complications during your treatment, follow the dentist’s instructions. If an antibiotic is prescribed, it is necessary for you to finish the entire prescription.

Have a permanent restoration attached, such as a crown, once the root canal therapy is done.

How to take Care of your Teeth?

To prevent tooth decay, infections and gum disease, follow these tips:

  • Brush your teeth during bedtime and at least 1 other time every day

  • Use toothpaste that has fluoride

  • Use a proper toothbrush and replace it regularly

  • Get dental checkups and cleaning regularly

  • Use flossing to clean between the teeth and stop the buildup of plaque

  • Avoid sugary drinks or foods; follow a healthy diet.

Root canal treatment is not something to worry about or be afraid of; it is painful for a few days after treatment. However, it is better to get the treatment than suffer from an infectious toothache, which also has the risk of spreading to your other teeth.


If you are looking for root canal treatment in Mumbai, visit our expert team of dentists in Andheri, East, Mumbai and learn everything you need to about a root canal.