What is Root Canal Treatment?
Root canal treatment is a common dental procedure of which many thousands are performed worldwide every year. It is also known as endodontic treatment.
At the centre of the tooth is the nerve or dental pulp. The nerve in the tooth may become infected for several reasons:
- Tooth decay
- Trauma to the tooth, such as a bump playing contact sport
- Repeated previous extensive dental work such as fillings, crowns, and bridges
- Cracks or chips in teeth
Symptoms of infection may include swelling of the gum, pain with hot or cold drinks, or pain on biting.
Root canal treatment aims to stop the pain, remove the infection and seal the inside of the tooth to prevent it happening again.
How is a root canal treatment performed?
The infected dental pulp is removed and the root canal system is thoroughly cleaned and sealed. A rubber sheet (rubber dam) is routinely used throughout the procedure to isolate the tooth to help disinfect the tooth thoroughly. This treatment is usually carried out under the use of an operating microscope and local anesthesia.
Treatment is normally completed in 2-3 visits, depending on the tooth needing treatment. Root canal treatment is successful in around 90% of cases.
If your tooth is not suitable for root canal treatment or the chance of success is unfavorable, you will be informed at the time of consultation or when a complication becomes evident.
The alternative to root canal treatment is often extraction of the tooth and consideration to space replacement.
Does it hurt?
Root canal treatment has a reputation for causing pain. If done properly, this should never be the case. All treatment will be carried out under local anaesthetic, so there should be no reason that the treatment should be uncomfortable.
What is the referral process?
Your dentist will normally contact our clinic with a letter/email of referral.
On receipt of this referral, one of our reception staff shall contact you to book an appointment. The initial consultation costs £95.
A £50 deposit will be required to secure the initial consultation appointment, with a further £45 being payable at the time of your consultation.
What happens on my first visit?
On your first visit, a full consultation and dental examination will be carried out, along with appropriate X-rays. This helps to make an accurate assessment and diagnosis so as to provide you with the most appropriate advice regarding your tooth. Lyndon will then explain and discuss his findings, treatment options and costs with you.
Should you have any questions or queries regarding the proposed treatment plan, Lyndon would be happy to answer any queries or concerns you have.
Treatment is not normally carried out on this visit. However, if you are in pain or have sustained a recent dental injury and your dentist makes this known beforehand, then treatment may be commenced.
How much will it cost?
The costs associated with this procedure can vary depending on such factors as the severity of damage to the affected tooth and which tooth is affected. In general, endodontic treatment is much less expensive than tooth removal and replacement with an artificial tooth. An estimate of costs will be provided before commencement of treatment.
A fee guide can be found on the fees page to cover standard treatments.
WHAT HAPPENS AFTER TREATMENT?
At the conclusion of treatment, the initial quoted fee covers the cost of a temporary filling to cover the tooth. This has an average lifespan of a few months.
Following treatment, it is the responsibility of your own dentist to provide an appropriate crown or filling, as advised by Lyndon. A detailed treatment report and x-rays will sent to you and your dentist for ongoing care. You should contact your dentist for a follow-up appointment within a few weeks of completion of treatment. To prevent further dental decay, continue to routinely undertake good dental hygiene measures.
It is rare for patients to experience complications after treatment. However, if a problem does occur, you should contact us immediately so that we can help.