Frequently asked questions
Endodontics is a branch of dentistry that involves the treatment of the root canal and surrounding tissues of the tooth.
When you look at your teeth, unless they’re badly damaged, all you should be able to see is the crown.
The tooth consists of three main parts:
The outer layer: called the enamel, this is the strongest part of the tooth. Enamel can be destroyed by bacteria, wear or trauma.
The body: known as dentine, this is the calcified tissue that is exposed when the enamel is corroded. It is considerably softer and more susceptible to decay than the enamel.
The root canal system: this is the main concern of endodontics. It houses the soft tissues, blood vessels and nerves, which is called the pulp.
When the inside of the tooth is exposed by decay/fracture/restorations, bacteria can attack the pulp, causing pain and other serious health-related issues such as infection.
If your teeth are in the advanced stages of dental decay, have suffered fractures, or been otherwise damaged, it is important that they are seen to immediately and by a professionally qualified dental surgeon or specialist endodontist.
Saving your tooth through endodontic treatment is less expensive and less invasive than an extraction and replacement with a bridge or implant.
This is a list of approximate prices but please be aware that these are subject to deviation.
- Molar – $2800-$3100
- Premolar – $2100-$2300
- Anterior – $1900-$2100
- Consultation – $200-$260 (inclusive of x-rays)
- Cone beam image – $200
- Surgery – $1,600-$2,000
For a full quote, please organise a consultation with our specialists.
We accept payment on the day of service by Eftpos, Visa, Mastercard, Direct Bank Deposit or cheque.
We are also pleased to offer health fund claiming through HICAPS at our Brisbane and Southport rooms.
Pain is only one indication that root canal treatment may be necessary.
Some patients may never experience pain with an infected tooth.
Some patients may experience tooth pain initially and then it goes away on its own or with the help of antibiotics.
Just because it has stopped hurting doesn’t mean it is no longer infected.
An endodontic procedure is necessary when the pulp/tooth or surrounding tissue becomes severely damaged or inflamed due to deep decay, infection, a filling cracking or leaking, or it can occur after an accident/trauma involving the tooth.
Endodontic treatment will remove the bacteria and irritants from the root canals allowing the surrounding tissue to heal itself and bring it back to normal function.
If a tooth with damaged pulp is left untreated, it can eventually cause severe pain, abscesses and lead to the eventual loss of the tooth.
In more severe cases, this may also include destruction of the supporting bone and surrounding tissues.
In some extreme cases, this can even lead to blood poisoning.
Once your root canal treatment has been completed, you will be returned to your dentist (or occasionally, a root canal specialist), who will place a final restoration or crown on the tooth.
Some patients may experience mild to moderate discomfort following routine endodontic treatment or endodontic microsurgery.
Your specialist will advise whether pain-relieving medication is appropriate subsequent to your treatment.
More information can be found in Pre-and Post-Op Care.
In some cases, discoloured teeth can also be bleached prior to final restoration.
An endodontist completes a minimum of an additional 3 years study in an accredited endodontics post graduate program.
This means that in addition to performing routine root canal and tooth pulp treatments, the endodontist has extensive training in the diagnosis and treatment of a variety of conditions.
These include diagnosing and relieving orofacial pain, treating traumatic injuries to teeth and retreating previously unsuccessful root canal fillings under an operating microscope.
This means there is a higher success rate in keeping your tooth and ultimately maintains your ability to chew and function while keeping your smile intact!
Most of our patient’s comment that any pain associated with treating the tooth, or during the post surgery phase is significantly less than any pain experienced when the tooth was infected/damaged.
At Endodontics Only, we take great care to ensure you are comfortable and relaxed during your treatment.
Thanks to modern technology and advances in local analgesia and anaesthesia, endodontic treatment can and should be completely painless.
Most cases do not require any form of sedation, however, if you are anxious, please discuss with your endodontist about your options.
As the local anaesthetic wears off following your treatment, you may experience some discomfort but can often be managed with over-the-counter pain-relief medications.
In the days following your treatment, your tooth may feel sensitive and unusual compared to the other teeth in your mouth. This sensitivity varies, depending on the severity and extent of your tooth damage prior to treatment.
Should the sensitivity last more than a few days, or if it escalates to be extremely painful, please contact us.
Using a special microscope and other specially designed instruments, your endodontist will carefully remove the infected pulp that’s inside your tooth, which will relieve the pain, inflammation and infection.
The tooth is now ‘nerveless’ inside but outside, maintains its natural structure and is still alive.
The canal is thoroughly cleaned and disinfected and then gently shaped, filled and permanently restored.
It now looks like it was before it became damaged.
Finally, a permanent restoration (crown), is placed on the remaining tooth to give it long term protection against further infection or cracks.
Root canal treatment is a proven and predictable procedure.
Teeth that are extracted following root canal treatment usually have other problems such as gum disease, tooth decay or cracking of the root.
A failure to get the tooth crowned after root canal treatment is the most common reason for extraction.
Even within these constraints, less than 1% of root canal treated teeth fail per year!
Although the tooth is more fragile, with proper restoration, the tooth may last a lifetime.
Here are four tips to help avoid root canal treatment in the future;
- Keep your teeth decay-free by brushing and flossing every day.
- Eat a healthy diet low in sugar and avoid acidic beverages such as soda.
- Come to the dental office regularly for professional cleanings and exams.
- If you’re active in sports, consider ordering a custom-made mouthguard to protect your teeth from injury.
Saving your natural teeth is always the very best option.
Patients often hear stories that Root Canal Treatment is very painful and that it can be expensive compared to having their tooth removed.
However, as mentioned above our Specialists use modern techniques and technology and this along with their experience in the field can make root canal treatment pain-free.
In regards to expenses, while a Root Canal Procedure may seem like a big investment upfront, it is important to note, that there are multiple considerations involved when comparing to the cost of extraction, and the tooth’s replacement (bridge, denture or implant) can often be a lot more expensive.
Moreover, implants require multiple appointments, require surgery and bone grafting.
This can often result in time off work, with possible surgical complications.
An artificial tooth can be restrictive with your diet, and nothing can completely replace your natural tooth, and is crucial so you can continue to enjoy the wide variety of foods necessary to maintain the proper nutrient balance in your diet.
In comparison, our treatments are typically only 1-2 appointments for completion and patients can return to work the same day.
Endodontic treatment, along with appropriate restoration, is a cost-effective way to treat teeth with a damaged pulp and is usually less expensive than extraction and placement of a bridge or an implant.
Endodontic treatment also has a very high success rate, and many root canal treated teeth last a lifetime.
If your dentist recommends extraction, ask whether root canal treatment is an option.
Our team works without compromise and gives as much time as is needed to complete the job to satisfaction.
Following your initial consultation, your endodontist will explain what is required for your individual circumstance and how many visits will be necessary.
The amount of time a procedure takes depends on the details of the procedure you’re having and the type of tooth involved.
The treatment itself can often be completed in one visit.
Sometimes, two visits are required – one to disinfect, prepare and place medication and a second visit to review and complete your treatment.
We estimate your time in the office to last approximately 1-2 hours.
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