What is a root canal? A guide from our dental team


When it comes to preventive dental care, there is a real benefit to attending biannual check-ups.

Our team will be able to spot signs of tooth decay, gum disease and will also be able to advise you on your brushing technique and toothpaste.

Sadly, in some instances, you may have missed a few check-ups and may then find yourself suffering from a dental abscess. Luckily, the treatment for such an event is usually a choice of 2 options; either an extraction or a root canal.

And if you are like most people, you will probably prefer the extraction!

At Brisbane Laser Dentist, we are proud that our dental Coorparoo is able to offer all manner of dental care, including root canals and other procedures that eliminate infections and prevent their recurrence. We will talk you through any procedure that we recommend and will always answer any queries that you have, so you can make the most informed decision about your dental care.

So, back to root canals; what are they, why are they so disliked and why is our dental Coorparoo likely to recommend them? Read on for our short guide.

What is a root canal?

A root canal, also known as endodontic procedure, is a treatment that helps to remove sources of infection and prevent recurrence of them. Our dental Coorparoo will usually offer a root canal if you have a dental infection underneath a generally healthy tooth. Or, it may be offered if the tooth has split and the root or pulp of the tooth has been exposed.

In very rare cases, a root canal may be used if you have a sensitive tooth that has not responded to other treatments.

The procedure

A root canal will involve a member of our team numbing your gum and then drilling down into your tooth to reach the root. Once there, we will widen the drill area (the canal) and will begin removing the source of the infection.

Once the root is cleaned, we will then fill the canal with a substance known as gutta-percha, and place either a crown or a filling on the top of the tooth to seal the gap.


You may have concerns that a root canal will be uncomfortable. However, in most cases, this treatment resolves discomfort as the infection is removed and the swelling subsides. The area may feel tender for a few days afterwards; this is normal and should diminish on its own.


The aftercare for a root canal is minimal. You may need to take antibiotics if the root canal was performed to alleviate an infection. But aside from that, you will just need to brush and floss your teeth twice a day and attend biannual check-ups with our team to prevent another infection from forming.


Provided the root canal was fitted correctly, and that you engage with the aftercare, the treatment should easily last the rest of your life without a recurrence of an abscess or any discomfort. However, if you suspect that the abscess is returning, please call our team for an emergency appointment.


All treatments carry risks. Individual consultation is required with one of our practitioners to ensure that the treatment is right for you.