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Why do I need this treatment?

If tooth decay is so deep that it affects the nerve of the tooth, or if there is infection around the roots of a tooth, root canal treatment is needed. This treatment is essential to save the tooth and the only alternative is extraction.

What is root canal treatment?

The treatment involves removal of the nerve from inside the root canals, cleaning out infected tissue and filling the roots with a suitable material.  During the procedure a piece of rubber (rubber dam) is placed around the tooth both to prevent saliva from entering it and to prevent small root treatment instruments from being accidentally swallowed. The tooth will require a permanent restoration (either filling or crown) a few weeks/months after a successful root treatment.

Are there any risks involved?

We recommend treatment where we believe prognosis is favourable (difficult cases may be referred to a specialist). On average 95% of root treated teeth respond well to treatment. However, in a small percentage of cases, teeth will not respond and extraction may become necessary despite our best efforts. There is no guarantee of success in any given case. Possible complications include:

·A flare up causing pain/swelling during treatment, or persistent tenderness afterwards (passing discomfort after treatment is quite normal)
·Perforation of the root with instruments
·Fracture of an instrument inside the canal, which may cause an obstruction
·Tooth or root fracture
·Inability to fill the canal right to the end of the root
·Overextension of filling material through the root of the tooth
·Leaking of irrigation material into the mouth or through the root

In the unlikely event of complications, we’ll keep you fully informed and advise on further treatment.

Root canal treatment