All about root canals 

What is a root canal (endodontics) ?

A root canal is a procedure that is used to treat an infection at the centre of a tooth. Infection is caused by a build up of bacteria that live in the mouth – these bacteria invade the tooth. Infection can occur after tooth decay, damage to teeth as a result of an injury and leaky fillings.

Section of a molar showing its internal structure. Digital illustration.


How is a tooth structured?


There are 4 integral parts to a tooth which are:

  • enamel – this is the protective outer coating of your teeth.
  • dentine – soft material supporting enamel. This makes up most of the tooth.
  • cementum – hard material coating the root’s surface.
  • dental pulp – soft tissue at the centre of the tooth.



When would i need a root canal?

If an X-ray shows that pulp has been damaged because of a bacterial infection, you may need a root canal. Pulp will begin to die and if it has been infected with bacteria, this bacteria will multiply and spread (if left untreated).


Are there any symptoms?

You may feel pain when eating or drink hot and cold food and drink, when biting and chewing and if you have a loss tooth.

Further occurring symptoms:

  • Swelling of the gum at the location of the affected tooth.
  • Pus
  • Facial swelling
  • Tooth darkening in colour.


How is root canal treatment performed?

Your dentist here at Cornerhouse will need to remove the damaging bacteria from the root canal system.


This can be carried out by removing bacteria from the root canal system or by removing the tooth. We will try to salvage the tooth in every single case – extraction is always a last resort.


If you would like to arrange a consultation about undergoing treatment for a root canal, please do not hesitate to contact us.