An endodontic procedure is necessary when the pulp/tooth or surrounding tissue becomes severely damaged or inflamed due to deep decay, infection, a filling cracking or leaking, or it can occur after an accident/trauma involving the tooth. Endodontic treatment will remove the bacteria and irritants from the root canals allowing the surrounding tissue to heal itself and bring it back to normal function.
How long will my root canal treatment last?
If the endodontic treatment is done to a high technical standard and the tooth is properly restored in a timely way, and with good hygiene care and regular check-ups by your general dentist, there is a >95% chance that the tooth will be retained for many years and perhaps a lifetime.
Endodontic treatment instead salvages your natural tooth; your own tooth is far better at chewing and biting than an artificial tooth.
How does endodontic treatment save the tooth?
Using a special microscope and other speacially designed instruments, your endodontist will carefully remove the infected tissue (pulp) that’s inside your tooth. This will relieve the pain, inflammation and infection. The tooth is now ‘nerveless’ inside but outside, maintains its natural structure and is still alive. The canal is thoroughly cleaned and disinfected and then gently shaped, filled and permanently restored. It now looks like it was before it became damaged.
Finally, a permanent restoration e.g. a crown, is placed on the remaining tooth to give it long term protection against further infection or cracks.
Will I feel pain during and after the treatment?
At Malvern Endodontics, we take great care to ensure you are comfortable and relaxed during your treatment. Often, a local anaesthetic is administered so that the endodontic treatment can be carried out with no painful side effects.
As the local anaesthetic wears off following your treatment, you may experience some discomfort but can often be managed with over-the-counter pain-relief medications. In the days following your treatment, your tooth may feel sensitive and unusual compared to the other teeth in your mouth. This sensitivity varies, depending on the severity and extent of your tooth damage prior to treatment. Should the sensitivity last more than a few days, or if it escalates to be extremely painful, seek advice from your endodontist.
Most of our patients comment however, that any pain associated with treating the tooth or in the after surgery phases is no comparison to what they experienced when the tooth was infected/damaged.
If I am not experiencing pain, do I still need a root canal?
Pain is only one indication that root canal treatment may be necessary. A healthy patient may harbour an infection inside a tooth, but due to a robust ability to fight infection, the patient may be unaware of what is happening inside the tooth. Your general dentist can often identify these teeth and refer you to Malvern Endodontics to have these infected teeth treated by root canal therapy before they cause infection, swelling and pain.
How long will my root canal treatment take?
Every case is different so we take time to tailor our treatment plans to suit each individual. Generally speaking, approximately 1-1½ hours per visit and generally 1-3 appointments. Following your initial consultation, your endodontist will explain what is required for your individual circumstance and how many visits will be necessary.
Why should I opt for a Root Canal Treatment over an Extraction?
Patients often hear stories that Root Canal Treatment is very painful and that it can be expensive compared to having their tooth removed. However, as mentioned above our Specialists use modern techniques and technology and this along with their experience in the field can make root canal treatment painfree.
In regards to expenses, while a Root Canal Procedure may seem like a big investment upfront compared to a simple extraction, once a tooth is removed it must be replaced by an artificial tooth, to avoid future dental problems. So you do need to take into consideration that the cost of an extraction, and the tooth’s replacement (bridge, denture or implant) can often be a lot more expensive. Moreover, implants require multiple appointments, require surgery and bone grafting. This can often result in time off work, with possible surgical complications. Endodontic treatment is nearly always only 1-2 appointments for completion and patients can return to work the same day.
See here for more information, that has kindly been provided by the American Association of Endodontics.
Are you concerned about the safety of having a Root Canal Treatment Procedure?
It is best to book in a consultation so that you can gain all of the information you need and have the ability to ask your questions and address any concerns face to face with one of our Endodontists. We do however understand the range of information out there in regards to the risks involved with having Root Canal Treatment. As members of the American Association of Endodontics we have access to some great fact sheets, which we would love to share with our patients or future patients.
Please click the following links to view the Root Canal Fact Sheets: