Your dentist may suggest root canal treatment if there is inflammation or infection inside one of your teeth. They will clean and fill inside the tooth to prevent further damage or infection. Root canal treatment can save your tooth from having to be taken out. Treatment is carried out under local anaesthetic, so you will not feel any pain and is normally carried out over two or three appointments. Dentists can perform root canal treatment but your dentist may refer you to an endodontist, a dentist that specialises in root canal treatment if your tooth is difficult to treat and they think this will give you a better chance of saving the tooth.
You may experience some discomfort and the tooth may feel sensitive for a couple of days following treatment, but this can normally be controlled using over the counter pain killers and you should be able to return to your normal activities the following day.
The tooth’s nerve is not vitally important to a tooth’s health and function. The presence or absence of a nerve will not affect the day to day functioning of the tooth.
Benefits of root canal treatment
- Saves the Tooth – If left untreated the infection in the pulp of a tooth can cause the tooth structure to deteriorate. This means that the tooth will eventually become unsalvageable and will need to be extracted.
- Reduces Pain – Root canal treatment will help to alleviate the pain and discomfort, by removing the infected pulp and nerve.
- Prevents abscess forming – In the early stages an infection can be painless, by undergoing root canal treatment at this stage it is possible to prevent abscesses forming.
- Prevents the spread of infection – Root canal treatment removes the bacteria that causes the infection and prevents any further spread.
- Improves oral health – If left untreated the infection in the tooth can spread from the mouth into other parts of the body. Undergoing root canal treatment is a proactive way to protect your health and maintain your smile.
- Helps to preserve your jawbone – When teeth are preserved, the jawbone remains intact. A missing tooth causes jawbone degeneration over time.
- Maintains confidence and self-esteem – With root canal treatment there is no need to worry about an un-slightly gap or expensive dental implant treatment to replace a missing tooth. Your smile will remain intact and looking its best.