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Hamilton Dentists


Fri Oct. 2nd 2015

Q  What is a periapical abscess?
A  periapical abscess is an infection at the end of the root of your tooth and forms when for some reason or other the nerve of the tooth dies.

Q Can it be treated?

A To treat this infection you must undergo at procedure called root canal treatment.

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Q What does it involve?

This procedure is a combination of two appointments. The first appointment will involve the dentists finding the canals of the tooth and taking out the root. He will also clean out the canals and pack them with medicine and then put in a temporary filling.

After two weeks you will have the second and final appointment. The dentist will repeat the procedure of cleaning and medicating the canals and then pack them and put in a permanent filling. Each appointment takes approximately 1 hour. 

Q What will my tooth look like after treatment?

A The tooth will look the same but may darken a little over time. It is important to realize after this procedure is done that the tooth becomes brittle and is susceptible to breakage so the dentist will advise you to get a crown within the next 6 months or so if you wish to keep this tooth. 

Q What if it happens again?

A This is unlikely, but root canal treatment can be carried out again.

Q Is it expensive?

A Root canal treatment is a time consuming procedure, especially on the molars, which have a larger multi root system. You will need to discuss the cost with your dentist.

Q What if I don’t have the treatment?

A The chances are if you have this kind of abscess you will be in pain. If you do not wish to get a root canal then the alternative is to have the tooth extracted. 

Q Where can this treatment be carried out?

A Your family dentist will normally provide this treatment. Occasionally a specialist called an Endodontist will carry out the treatment.

Q What about aftercare?

A Your dentist will give you instructions after the procedure. Usually if you eat soft foods and nurse it for a while you should be fine, however you need to consider getting a crown to allow full strength of that tooth again.