Root Canal Treatment in UK: Cost, Procedures & More

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If you have one or more decaying teeth, your dentist might recommend an endodontic root canal treatment to resolve this issue and eliminate discomfort. This dental procedure tends to be quite long and expensive. Especially when you are not being treated by the National Health Service (NHS).

Getting a root canal treatment can save you from the painful experience of tooth extraction. In this procedure, the dentist gives you a root filling to restore the appearance as well as the functionality of your teeth.

Here is all you need to know about the cost of root canal treatment in the UK, its common procedures, and more:

What is the Root Canal Treatment?

This is a treatment that is done by either an endodontist or a general dentist and it involves drilling inside your tooth to remove decay and infections from the roots. This treatment is done when there is a tooth root infection that is causing irreparable damage to your tooth and affecting the surrounding teeth.

After treating the root, both the root and teeth are filled so that your remaining tooth stays unaffected. Teeth that have gone through root canal treatment are usually more fragile and sensitive. To cope with that, your dentist may advise you to fit a dental crown so that further damage and decay are prevented.   

When Do You Need Root Canal Treatment?

You may need a root canal treatment if you suffer from one or more of these symptoms:

  • Severe tooth decay or cracked teeth
  • Loose fillings
  • Gum infections and diseases
  • An injury like a blow to your jaw
  • Repeated dental treatments
  • Crown breakage

If you leave the root of your teeth untreated, it can lead to a build-up of abscess or puss which can be very hard to bear. This can also lead to swelling, a change in the color of your tooth, and nerve damage inside your mouth.   

Cost of The Root Canal Private Treatment in the UK

If you are registered with an NHS dentist, band 2 charges are applied for the treatment. This means you can get the treatment for about £73.50 in England. The prices may vary in Northern Ireland and Scotland. If you go for a root canal along with the crown treatment on the NHS, you are charged about £282.80 to £203.00.

If you prefer treatment from a private doctor, it might cost you somewhere between £100 to £700 in the UK. The exact root canal cost is determined by considering factors like the extent of damage, location and private rates of the dentist, tooth position, etc.       

Duration of Root Canal Treatment?

Multiple visits are needed to complete this procedure. Usually, a simple root canal can be done in 30 to 60 minutes. This duration of the procure may vary based on the complexity, extent of tissue damage, number of root canals, and the positioning of the tooth.

How Long Does This Treatment Last?

A root canal treatment lasts for about 8 to 10 years in 85% of the cases. Sometimes the treatment can even last a lifetime provided the patient adopts good oral hygiene. In case you feel some pain or discomfort after several years following the procedure, you can get a root canal retreatment to save your decaying tooth.  

Procedure for Root Canal Treatment

Following are the main steps involved in a typical root canal procedure


First, the doctor will take X-rays to find the right spot for the treatment. After that, the endodontist will give you local anesthesia and fit a waterproof dental dam or cofferdam in your mouth. This protects your mouth from bacteria and eliminates the risks of dust or debris falling into your mouth.

Opening The Tooth

Then the dentist uses a drill to make a hole in the top of your tooth and gains access to the pulp chamber. The mechanical rotary tool then clears away the dead and damaged pulp and nerve tissue from inside the root.

The doctor uses bright lighting and special microscopes to find out the traces of infection, root canal abscess, and affected nerves and then removes it using little files.


After that, the doctor cleans the area with an antibacterial solution and water. The solution is applied using a syringe and then it is sucked back out. After several repetitions, it is made sure that the area is completely cleaned and sterile.

Root Shaping

Root canals have a narrow and irregular shape and in this step, the doctor enlarges and reshapes each canal individually. This part of the procedure is very long and you might need several visits to have it done.

Root Filling

Now your dentist will use a thermoplastic material to permanently fill the tooth root. The dentist inserts cones into the canal and uses heat to compress them which leads to a complete and uniform filling.

Crowning (Optional)

The root canal treatment makes your tooth fragile. If that is the case, then your doctor might ask you to add a protective covering on the teeth called a crown. The crown covers your teeth and prevents further damage or decay to your gums, tooth root, and the tooth itself.  

Complications and Recovery

The major complications during and after this procedure include:

  • Tissues left inside the tooth
  • Bacteria leakage
  • Incomplete treatment of the canal
  • Fractured root tooth
  • Persistent pain and swelling

Beware of these complications and contact your dentist if you feel even the slightest discomfort.

Since this treatment is done under local anesthesia, it may take a few hours for the feeling to come back to your jaws and mouth. You can take ibuprofen, paracetamol, or some other over-the-counter painkillers to ease the discomfort and pain.


Root canal treatment can repair your damaged teeth and increase their life significantly. Though there is a perception that this treatment can be really painful but we assure you that is not the case.

Usually, you start to feel normal in a day or two following the treatment. The root canal price for the treatment can vary from £250 to £500 per tooth in the UK if you go with a private doctor in the UK or anywhere across the globe. Make sure to follow the post-procedure care plan advised by your doctor and contact them when you experience major complications.

Contact Specialist Dental Services London for the best root canal treatment experience in the UK.       

Dr. Narinder Dhadwal

Narinder is a Specialist Periodontist based in private practice. She qualified from St. Bartholomew’s & The Royal London School of Medicine and Dentistry, Queen Mary, University of London in 2007. During her studies she was awarded the Harold Fink Prize for outstanding academic achievement.

Posted On : July 17, 2023




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