Hi there, After a

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Hi there,

After a few visits to my NHS dentist and some testing, he has found that I need a root canal treatment on one of my teeth.

The bottom front tooth (the one on the right, at the very front of the set of bottom teeth).

He has given me two options; NHS and Private.

After discussing with him the differences between the two, he has told me, with Private treatment:

1. The ‘files’ used to get through the canal are different and more intricate. With different sized files. Where as with the NHS it’s all one size.
2. The material used to fill the canal afterwards is different as well.

What I’d like to know is:

1. As this tooth is quite small with a single canal right at the front of my teeth. Does this mean that the difference between doing it Privately or through the NHS would be very little? Considering the price difference is quite large (either £250 or £75)?

Thanks for your help!

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Asked on 16/11/2011 12:00 am
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Private answer

The motive for a dentist to not offer root canal on the NHS is down to it not being rewarded enough financially . It is a time consuming treatment and uses very expensive equipment as with most private dentistry .
An NHS Dentist will receive the same for an extraction as a root canal . One with no risk and much quicker for a successful treatment .

I would always give your lower front teeth the best chance to survive as there are many aesthetic challenges in restoring these teeth well . They are so small and once trimmed back are very week . They are very difficult to replace well with implants as well as most implant components are too big to restore them well (depending on the dentist who does the work )

Generally speaking in dentistry the smaller the treatment the more difficult as they must not perforate your root apex on clearing out all the remaining root canal .

Usually expensive magnification is needed , some expert practitioners would charge as much as 900 pounds for such a treatment just for the root canal with the right equipment  .

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Posted by Dental Professional (Questions: 0, Answers: 1475)
Answered on 23/06/2011 12:00 am
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Private answer

First of all there is an ethical issue in that any practitioner that is willing to carry out work to a lesser standard than he is capable of may well be in breach of NHS regulations not to mention the Hippocratic oath
Secondly there is the financial issue in that to carry out a good RCT with the best equipment he will not make a profit on the NHS and might lose money
This afternoon I carried out a root filling for one of my Denplan patients which was covered by her normal monthly fee
Did I do a good job? yes
Am I out of pocket? yes
Will I go bust? no because I have many more such patients paying me each month who are unlikely to need to root filling this year
This is how the NHS SHOULD work and if your dentist does not like it then he should leave the NHS and charge a going rate privately for the job
He also has the option to refer you to an NHS specialist or you can pay a private one

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Posted by Dental Professional (Questions: 0, Answers: 1475)
Answered on 23/06/2011 12:00 am
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Private answer

PS
this tooth might be small but they often have more than one canal that overlay each other on xray

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Posted by Dental Professional (Questions: 0, Answers: 1475)
Answered on 23/06/2011 12:00 am
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Private answer

It is the ideal that you should have the best treatment that you can afford.
If you are uncomfortable with the explanation given by your dentist ask him to explain the situation again or consider a second opinion or referal to a specialist.
In the long run the better the care provided now, the better the long term future of the tooth should be.Replacement of a front tooth may be more costly than the root canal treatment

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Posted by Dental Professional (Questions: 0, Answers: 1475)
Answered on 23/06/2011 12:00 am