We all pretty much know how our teeth look, and mostly what they consist of, we know they’re bones, but did you know there’s a hollow space in our teeth? If you didn’t we will explain to you what it is.
That hollow little part of our teeth is called a root canal. You may ask now: “What is a root canal?”. Well, let us start with the basics. At the center of every human tooth is a hollow area that is the home of the soft tissues, such as nerves, blood vessels and connective tissue. This hollow area contains a relatively wide space in the coronal portion of the tooth which is what we know as the pulp chamber.
Those canals run through the center of the roots, similar to how graphite does in a pencil. The pulp receives all of it required nutrition through the blood vessels, while sensory nerves carry signals back to our brains.
This all might sound a bit complicated, so just to clarify and put it in layman’s terms root canal anatomy consists of the pulp chamber and the root canals themselves. Both of them contain the dental pulp. The smaller branches of the root canal are referred to as “accessory canals” and are mostly found near the end of the root, which is mostly known as the apex. Sometimes humans decide to complicate things even more and have more than one root canal per root.
You probably know that some teeth may have a more variable internal anatomy than others. After all, humans are different from each other, so it’s good to find a specialist who will make sure what your teeth anatomy looks like.
Now we know what is a root canal, but what if it causes pain? Well a tooth can be relieved from pain, via root canal if there ever is irreversible damage to the pulp. That’s when an endodontist comes in and saves the day (or your teeth). An unusual root canal shape, complex branching (especially horizontal branches) and multiple root canals are considered to be the main cause of root canal treatment failures. Don’t be scared though.
There are a lot of root canals performed every year, so there’s nothing to be scarred of, endodontists have additional years of education and a lot of experience performing those surgeries, while also using the most modern technology dentistry has to offer.
The procedure we briefly talked about is called root canal treatment. It’s job is to protect the teeth from future microbial invasion.
Before such therapy is carried out though, the teeth has to be properly diagnosed. This allows the dentist or endodontist to properly decide on treatment further on.