Root Canal Treatment

Root Canal Treatment

Root canal treatment is the procedure whereby an infected or inflamed nerve is removed from a tooth. It is a highly effective way of treating and saving a tooth that would otherwise be extracted. The treatment is usually completed over two or three visits with the goal to have all infected and inflamed nerve tissue removed, the root canal system disinfected and then sealed with a root canal filling. The tooth will then be filled or have a full coverage crown placed to make the tooth functional again.

It is important to know that root canal treatment should NOT be painful. All treatments are performed under local anaesthetic and using all up to date techniques, principles and equipment ensuring that you feel no pain or discomfort. Call our experienced team today to learn more.

A root canal is a relatively simple procedure which is used to save a tooth which is badly damaged or infected. It replaces the damaged or infected pulp in the tooth with a filling. The purpose of a root canal is to save a tooth from having to be removed and prevent infection from spreading. Don’t worry – your tooth can function without the tooth pulp and nerves.

Cause of root canal

A root canal is often required if tooth pulp and/or nerves are damaged or infected, or if an abscess has formed. Damage to tooth pulp and nerves can be the result of a number of causes such as serious tooth decay, trauma to the tooth, chips or cracks, deep cavities, teeth grinding and gum disease. Left untreated, damage or infection can lead to bone loss, the infection spreading to other teeth or the removal of the tooth.

Appointments for root canal

The number of appointment you might need for your root canal will depend on the complexity of your situation. If you present with a simple and uncomplicated infection, you may only need one appointment. However, several appointments may be required if you have a severe presentation as your dentist will need to ensure that all infection and decay has been cleaned out.

Root canal procedure

Your dentist will complete x-rays to check the extent of any infection and to see the shape of your tooth. Small holes are then drilled into the tooth and the tooth pulp, along with any decay and infection, is cleaned out. The tooth canals are then shaped to be wider in diameter to ensure they are free from any bacteria. The canals are then filled to prevent any future infections.

Discomfort during root canal treatment

You’ll receive a local anaesthetic during the root canal treatment. In other words, you won’t feel any more discomfort than you would with other dental procedures. Patients who need to undergo root canal treatment have often put up with pain related to tooth damage and infection in the lead up the procedure so the discomfort related to the procedure itself is often comparatively minimal.

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Root canal success rate

Root canals are generally very successful with a 90% to 95% success rate. However, there are some factors which can contribute to a root canal failing. A tooth which has undergone a root canal is more prone to injury and there are instances where a crack forms, especially if a crown wasn’t put on straight away. There is also a risk that the tooth could become reinfected if the materials break down over time, the restoration has leaked, or if you don’t practice good dental hygiene. There is also the possibility that there is an extra canal in the tooth that wasn’t detected at the time of treatment and this becomes infected.

Root canal recovery

You generally recover from a root canal relatively quickly and most people return to normal activities within a day. Once the anaesthetic has worn off, you may experience some soreness around your gums due to the use of a rubber clamp during the procedure. The tooth which was treated may feel sore, particularly if there was a lot of infection and pain prior to the procedure. Over the counter pain relief, such as ibuprofen, is usually sufficient to deal with any pain and you might want to avoid chewing on your treated tooth until the tenderness dies down.

Root canal and crown

Having a crown placed on your tooth is often a procedure which accompanies a root canal. Once the actual root canal procedure in completed, your dentist can place a protective crown on your tooth rather than a large filling. A crown is generally made of porcelain, metal or a combination of both and covers your tooth to prevent cracks. You’ll be fitted with a temporary crown once an impression has been taken and will then have your permanent crown fitted a few days later. Your crown will look like your original tooth.

Cost of root canal

The cost of your root canal will vary depending on how serious your damage or infection is and how many appointments are needed to complete the procedure. If you have private health insurance, they will often cover part of the cost if dental is included in your extras. The tooth that needs treating will also impact on price as molars tend to more expensive as they have more canals that need to be filled. You could expect the cost of a root canal to be anything between $500 and $1,500.

If you need more information about root canal treatment, including root canal cost, contact Perth based Carillon City Dental today on (08) 9322 5340.