If the nerve of a tooth becomes damaged or dies due to decay or trauma, a root canal procedure can be used to save a tooth that would otherwise have required extraction. The root canal procedure removes infected or damaged tissue (pulp) from the inside of a tooth. This procedure usually requires two to three visits in which the following occurs:
- The pulp is located and removed.
- The pulp chamber and root canals are cleaned and sterilised.
- The root canals and pulp chamber are filled and sealed so that no bacteria can re-enter.
It is a common misconception that a root canal is a painful procedure. With the use of modern technology and anaesthetics, almost all of our patients who have required a root canal have found it no more uncomfortable than having a simple filling. There are only small number of patients who might experience some discomfort on the first visit if their tooth is heavily infected and already causing a toothache. After the procedure patients often feel relief from the initial pain of the toothache. After a root canal, it is often advised to protect the tooth with a crown as the decay or trauma that initially damaged the nerve often compromises the structural integrity of the tooth. As there is never a convenient time for a toothache, we encourage all our patients to attend regular check-up appointments so our dentists can identify and treat possible causes of toothache before a root canal is needed. If it’s been a while since your last check-up, please call our capable reception staff who can arrange an appointment to suit your busy schedule.