Redcliffe Dental Practice - Dental studio

Endodontics (Root Canal Treatment)

Endodontics is also known as root canal treatment, and of all the dental treatments available this is probably the one which frightens people the most.

But these days there is no need to be worried if you need endodontics. Modern techniques mean the procedure is painfree, and at Redcliffe Dental you can even have sedation, which is just like sleeping through the whole treatment! Best of all, it saves your natural tooth, often for life.

To understand a bit more about root canal treatment, you need to know more about the tooth.  The tooth has several layers.  On the outside, there is protective enamel – this is the bit you see.  Under the enamel is a fairly thick, hard layer of dentin.  In the middle of the tooth is a soft tissue called the pulp, which contains blood vessels, nerves and connective tissue.  This pulp runs from the crown of the tooth (the bit above your gum) down to the very tip of your tooth roots – if your tooth has more than one root (your bigger teeth have two or three) then it runs through all of those roots.

Root Canal Treatment

Root canal treatment is necessary when the pulp becomes infected or inflamed. This can be caused by dental decay, damage to the tooth such as a crack or chip, repeated dental procedures on the tooth, or if the tooth has been accidentally injured (even if it is not showing any external signs of injury).


The infection or inflammation can cause dull or sharp tooth ache, and can lead to a dental abscess, which can be extremely painful.

Not so long ago, this would have meant having your tooth extracted, and then either learning to cope with an unsightly gap, or having to pay for it to be replaced with a bridge or denture.  But now we can usually save your tooth, by removing the pulp, making sure that we get rid of any bacteria, and carefully filling the hole that is left.  The tooth is usually restored to its full strength and functionality with a crown.

The tooth roots are tiny, and are not naturally straight, so the procedure is very detailed and fiddly, and often takes a while to complete. That is why it is best carried out by a professional with specialist equipment and skills.  It is also why the treatment is more expensive than many others – although usually it is still cheaper than replacing a lost tooth.

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