Root canal therapy is needed when the pulp inside your tooth becomes infected through tooth decay or damaged by an injury to your mouth or issues from a previous filling. This infection may spread through the root canal system, which could eventually lead to an abscess, and cause a great deal of discomfort. If root canal therapy is not carried out, the tooth may need to be taken out.
At Dentist on Shakespeare, we are here to save your tooth whenever possible and it may be that your painful tooth needs a root canal treatment. But don’t worry, we are here to make it easy for you.
Saving the natural tooth with root canal treatment has many advantages:
- Efficient chewing
- Normal biting force and sensation
- Natural appearance
- Protects other teeth from excessive wear or strain
A root canal treatment is a medical procedure to remove a seriously injured or diseased pulp.
The pulp is in the middle of the tooth and it contains the blood vessels and the nerve that helps grow the tooth during its development. A fully developed tooth can survive without the pulp because the tooth continues to be nourished by the tissues surrounding it.
Once the infected pulp is removed, the inside of the tooth is thoroughly disinfected. Whilst RCT can be completed in a single appointment, it is beneficial to the success of your treatment to complete it over two or three appointments.
At the end of the root canal treatment, we will restore a tooth with a permanent filling, but sometimes the tooth may need a crown to properly restore its strength and prevent it from breaking. We will carefully explain this need if required.
Modern root canal treatment is usually a painless procedure that feels no different than a regular filling. We always aim to achieve really good anaesthesia of the tooth before beginning any treatment like this.
If you feel nervous about any dental treatments, you can also talk to our dentists about the sedation options we offer at our clinic to help anxious patients feel calm and relaxed.
Although you will most likely be numb for 2-4 hours following the procedure, most patients are able to return to school or work directly following a root canal treatment.
Taking some pain killers immediately after is advised to prevent any post-op discomfort.
Root canal therapy is highly successful; the procedure has more than a 95% success rate. Once restored appropriately, be that with filling or dental crown, many teeth fixed with a root canal can last a lifetime.
The only alternative to a root canal procedure is having the tooth extracted and replaced with a bridge, implant, or removable partial denture to restore chewing function and prevent adjacent teeth from shifting. These alternatives not only are more expensive than a root canal procedure but require more treatment time and additional procedures to adjacent teeth and supporting tissues.