When I tell most patients they need to have a root canal treatment, they grimace, and frown, and shudder, and look scared. This is my cue to explain what root canal treatment is really all about! It’s rarely what people think or have heard.
Many dentists don’t like to do root canal treatments, as it is very challenging work, and it requires long sessions with painstaking care and detail. So many dentists refer root canal treatments off to specialists to complete, at a much higher cost to the patient. But I love the challenge of the root canal treatment!! Every tooth is different and a little puzzle in itself to solve.
I also enjoy helping my patients relax before and during the the root canal treatment. I find that if I explain carefully the steps involved, and what the patients will expect to feel and smell etc., then they are much less anxious going in to the procedure. In fact, as each session is quite long, and the work is quite gentle, I have had several patients fall asleep during root canal treatment!
I have great nurses, and great equipment for root canal treatments, and these make my job so much easier and more enjoyable too.
Common Questions about root canal surgery:
Q. How do I know if I need a root canal treatment?
A. You can’t really know until your dentist has done a series of tests on your teeth to prove a tooth requires a root canal treatment. But usually it will be an option after a very severe tooth ache, or swelling caused by a tooth.
Q. How do I keep my mouth open for long periods of time?
A. We have rubber blocks which are used to prop the mouth open and rest jaw muscles. These make it much easier for our patients to fall asleep!
Q. How long does root canal treatment take?
A. From start to finish it usually takes 2 to 3 visits over about 3 months.
Q. Does root canal treatment hurt?
A. Not usually. The tooth is numbed for the first visit as a precaution, then on subsequent visits, we usually don’t need to numb the tooth. This is why patients can fall asleep during treatment!