A guide to root canals from our dentist in Tooting

Do you need a root canal but don’t know what to expect?

At Broadway Dental Centre, our dentist in Tooting has the expertise to make any root canal procedure as comfortable as possible, promoting better long-term dental and physical health.

Here, our dentist in Tooting discusses the steps involved in having a root canal performed.

Preparing the area

Before beginning any root canal procedure, the first thing our dentist in Tooting will do is clean the area and numb your mouth.

This procedure is very intensive and requires a great deal of preparation to eliminate the chances of worsening an already present infection. It will involve cleaning the top of the tooth and the surrounding teeth with an antibacterial solution.

Drilling and shaping

Our team will gently drill a very fine hole down into the root of your tooth and then use very thin files to shape the access canal. This is important as the sides have to be as smooth as possible to prevent the bacteria from getting caught in the canal as we remove it.

Once the hole is drilled and shaped, we will begin removing the source of the infection from the pulp; this can be fiddly and may take longer if the tooth having the root canal has more than one root.


Once the pulp has been cleared and the source of infection removed, we will begin to gradually fill the access hole. This can take a great deal of precision and time, making it one of the longest parts of the process.

We use a rubber-like substance known as gutta-percha, which fills every part of the access hole and is strong enough to offer stability to the tooth. This filling also prevents bacteria or other fluids from gaining access to this part of the tooth, which, if part of your pulp is still intact, could become reinfected.

After the tooth has been filled, we move on to securing our work.


With the tooth all filled in, our team may decide to either place a filling or a crown over the access hole; this serves 2 purposes.

The first is to strengthen the tooth; it has been somewhat hollowed out by the procedure and will need a bit of help to remain as strong as it was before it became infected. If you are having a root canal performed on a tooth with a single root, then our team may choose either a crown or filling, but if it is a molar tooth, we are more likely to fit a crown.


It is fair to say that if you have had a root canal after a dental abscess, the procedure will probably make you feel a lot more comfortable.

But, we do advise exercising caution for a few days afterwards since the area underneath the tooth is likely to feel bruised, which is normal. We will also prescribe antibiotics to help with the healing process, which you should finish to ensure that the infection is fully taken care of. Luckily, a root canal should last the rest of your life without issue; however, if you suspect that an infection is forming at any time in the tooth that has been treated, please contact our team.