Root Canals: FAQs About Treatment That Can Save Your Teeth

A healthy tooth is protected by tooth enamel, but if this becomes damaged, it can let in harmful bacteria that eventually infect the soft, inner part of the tooth called the dental pulp. In this case, we may suggest root canal treatment to save the tooth from extraction.

What is a Root Canal?

Root canal treatment removes the dental pulp and other soft tissues extending into the root canals in the tooth roots. The empty pulp chamber and root canal are cleaned and disinfected before being permanently filled and sealed.

Can I Get Treatment during a Regular Checkup?

No, you will need a separate appointment, or we may choose to refer you to an endodontist who specialises in root canal therapy.

What to Expect If I Need a Root Canal?

If you need a root canal, it shouldn’t feel any worse than a dental filling but takes longer to complete, using local anaesthetic to ensure you don’t feel a thing. You will need at least two visits to our dental practice. During the first visit, we can clean out the root canals and disinfect them. Once we are sure the infection is eliminated, we can permanently restore the tooth, usually with a dental crown.

Five Ways to Deal with Tooth Sensitivity

If sipping an ice-cold drink or eating ice cream is a pain rather than a pleasure, you may have tooth sensitivity. This problem can arise if the tooth enamel covering your teeth wears down, exposing the softer dentine underneath. Whenever you eat or drink something hot or cold or sweet or sour, these sensations can penetrate the tooth more easily, causing sensitivity and pain. Follow our suggestions to help reduce tooth sensitivity.

  1. Drink through a straw so you minimise the amount of contact between fluids and your teeth.
  2. Lick frozen desserts instead of biting into them. This helps to avoid the dessert coming into direct contact with your teeth.
  3. Breathe through your nose, as teeth can become sensitive and painful if you breathe in cold air through your mouth.
  4. Reduce your risk of tooth sensitivity by brushing your teeth at least twice a day with a soft-bristled toothbrush, and make sure you floss every day.
  5. Use toothpaste designed for sensitive teeth as this contain special ingredients that help relieve sensitivity, protecting your teeth.

If your teeth are especially painful, book a checkup in case you have a cavity or another dental issue needing treatment.

Artificial Sweeteners and Your Oral Health

Most people know that sugar is bad for their teeth, but it’s the bacteria in your mouth that feed on sugar and cause the damage. As bacteria consume sugar, they produce acid that attacks the tooth enamel, weakening it and eventually causing cavities. Many people are trying to cut down on their sugar consumption and are choosing artificial sweeteners instead.

While artificial sweeteners don’t contain any sugar and will not feed bacteria in your mouth, they can still negatively impact oral health. Many sweeteners have high levels of acid, and any form of acid will weaken your tooth enamel. Manufacturers add acids to artificial sweeteners and sugar-free drinks and sweets because it makes them taste better. If you want to have something containing an artificial sweetener, it’s best to choose chocolate flavoured products as these tend to have less acid than fruit flavoured drinks and foods.

However, there is one artificial sweetener that is good for your teeth and which is called xylitol. Xylitol can actually help reduce the risk of tooth decay by inhibiting the growth of harmful bacteria. Over time, using xylitol helps reduce the number of decay-causing bacteria that survive on tooth surfaces.