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Root Canal Treatment

A routine dental procedure, root canal treatment (also known as endodontics), is a process whereby the nerve has become inflamed resulting in sensitivity, toothache and/or a dental abscess. Root treatments are required when the damage to the nerve is irreversible and it is necessary to clean out the space in the centre of the tooth where the nerve normally lies. The root channel is then filled with a special sealant that enables the healing and restoration of the tooth. Our team is fully qualified to undertake all endodontic procedures, from simple, straightforward cases to more complex procedures which may require re-treatment.

While the procedures associated with root canal work involved several hours in the chair, I never once had any pain or discomfort, for which I am very grateful. Thank you for your professionalism and care in the way you approach your work.

FAQs

Why is root treatment necessary?

Teeth are living parts of the body. Teeth have an outer hard covering (enamel), however the core of the tooth is a softer substance (dentine) and inside this there is a nerve and blood supply to the tooth. On occasion this nerve can become inflamed resulting in sensitivity, toothache and/or a dental abscess. Root treatments are required when the damage to the nerve is irreversible and it is necessary to clean out the space in the centre of the tooth where the nerve normally lies and to seal that space to prevent further infection or inflammation. Common reasons for damage to the nerve of a tooth include trauma (accidents), dental diseases such as tooth decay and gum disease, tooth wear and abrasion or erosion.

How are root treatments done?

Root treatments can take a number of visits depending on how complex the root is or whether the infection settles. There are a variety of techniques used for cleaning and shaping the root canals which involve the use of fine instruments called files. On occasion these files can break inside the tooth which may require further treatment or referral if this occurs. Your dentist will be able to discuss with you the likelihood of fracture of files which may be more likely in certain circumstances. Sometimes it is possible to complete a root treatment even with a piece of file inside a tooth, however it may also be necessary to monitor the outcome or refer to a specialist if the breakage of the file compromises a good outcome.

What happens if a tooth is root treated?

Depending on whether the tooth is infected or not, the treatment may take a number of visits to complete. Patients can experience some tenderness or soreness in the tooth after root treatment and occasionally the tooth may not settle down and further treatment or a re-treatment may be required. If the tooth is not successful in resolving the symptoms (if present) then the tooth may ultimately need to be removed. Your dentist should be able to discuss the prospect of success with you and whether there are any particular reasons an individual tooth might have a higher risk of failure.

Despite the best techniques being used, success cannot be guaranteed particularly in the teeth with a complex anatomy. The majority of root treatments are, however, successful and avoid the loss of a tooth which can create significant problems.

What other treatment may be required?

When teeth are root treated it is important to understand fully any future treatment that is required in order to protect those teeth. Root treated teeth have often already suffered a significant amount of damage and it may be necessary to protect them with a crown or some other long-term solution. The root treatment may save a tooth but there is often a significant amount of additional treatment required because of the earlier damage to the tooth before it needed root treatment. Root treated teeth can also look darker than non-root treated teeth and your dentist will be able to discuss any cosmetic treatment needed to address this where necessary.

Does it hurt?

No. Usually, a local anaesthetic is used and it should feel no different to having an ordinary filling done.

What other treatment may be required?

When teeth are root treated it is important to understand fully any future treatment that is required in order to protect those teeth. Root treated teeth have often already suffered a significant amount of damage and it may be necessary to protect them with a crown or some other long-term solution. The root treatment may save a tooth but there is often a significant amount of additional treatment required because of the earlier damage to the tooth before it needed root treatment. Root treated teeth can also look darker than non-root treated teeth and your dentist will be able to discuss any cosmetic treatment needed to address this where necessary.

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8 The Fillybrooks, Stone, Staffordshire, ST15 0DJ

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