Professional root canal treatment in Melbourne
A root canal is required when the pulp (soft, living tissue) inside your tooth has become infected. There is no ‘easier’ option, as the only other treatment available is to remove the tooth and get an implant. Root canal treatment is carried out under anaesthetic and should restore your tooth to health, so there is no need to fear it.
Will a root canal hurt?
It is important to us at Station Square Dental that our patients feel as comfortable as possible. We will not continue with a root canal until we are absolutely sure the anaesthetic has done its job. With enough anaesthetic, a root canal should feel no more uncomfortable than your average filling.
Some people feel no pain at all following a root canal, while others feel a little tenderness for a day afterwards. You can relieve any ache by sleeping with your head elevated and taking the painkillers we advise.
We will discuss everything with you in detail prior to the root canal, so you know what to expect. Whether it has been caught early or is more advanced, we will decide on a personalised course of treatment so that you get the least pain and the best possible results.
Symptoms of needing root canal treatment
The symptoms include tooth sensitivity, a general toothache, or particularly localised pain when chewing. In more advanced cases an abscess can develop under the tooth, the gum becoming sore and inflamed. Left untreated, this infection can cause severe pain and spread through the gum into the bone and cause serious issues.
Why do I need a root canal?
The pulp inside the tooth is where the blood vessels and nerves live, and this area is usually unaffected by small cavities. However in cases where the decay has spread deep into the tooth, or the tooth is cracked or damaged, the pulp can become inflamed and infected.
Rest assured that you are in safe hands in our clinic and that if we think you would be better treated by a specialist we have preferred specialists that we will refer you to. Dr Patel will make no hesitation in recommending any of his patients if he considers that the issues or the management of the problem are too complex for his abilities.
Root canal procedure
Before your root canal procedure, we will anaesthetise the area. More anaesthetic is required than for a routine filling because this treatment directly affects the nerve, so your mouth will go very numb. A rubber sheet isolates the tooth from the rest of your mouth so that the bacteria cannot spread to the rest of your mouth. We will then drill an opening in your tooth to access the pulp. Disinfectant and very fine instruments are used to wash and scrape out the infected tissue and damaged nerves and kill the bacteria.
After this, the canal is sealed with a rubber-like substance. The tooth is then capped with a crown or filling, depending on the level of damage to the tooth. The tooth is still essentially dead, having no healthy living tissue and no blood supply, but a root canal saves the structure of the tooth for appearances and for the sake of your bite.
How long will a root canal take?
We usually carry out the treatment over one or two appointments, depending on how severe or complex the case is. Each appointment is between an hour and a half and two hours long.
It pays to get a second opinion
If you are unsure about a root canal treatment plan which you have received, put your mind at ease by getting a second opinion with Dr Ron Patel. He will explain in detail the reasons for his recommendations.