Endodontists are dental specialists who have had two to three years of advanced training beyond dental school​ who diagnose and treat problems related to the soft tissue inside of a tooth.

Root canals are needed for a cracked tooth from injury or genetics, a deep cavity, or issues from a previous filling. Patients generally need a root canal when they notice their teeth are sensitive, particularly to hot and cold sensations. 

There are a few symptoms that mean you might need a root canal—

  • Severe pain while chewing or biting
  • Pimples on the gums
  • A chipped or cracked tooth
  • Lingering sensitivity to hot or cold, even after the sensation has been removed
  • Swollen or tender gums
  • Deep decay or darkening of the gums

During root canal therapy, our doctor will remove the affected pulp tissue, carefully clean and shape the inside of your tooth and then fill and seal the space. Afterwards, you will return to your dentist who will place a crown or other restoration on the tooth to protect and restore it to full function.

Root canal therapy is necessary when the pulp of your tooth becomes diseased or damaged. The disease or damage can have a variety of causes: deep decay, repeated dental procedures on the tooth or a crack or chip in the tooth. Additionally, a previous blow to a tooth may cause pulp damage.

Since patients are given anesthesia, a root canal isn’t more painful than a regular dental procedure, such as a filling or getting a wisdom tooth removed. However, a root canal is generally a bit sore or numb after the procedure, and can even cause mild discomfort for a few days.  You can be certain that a root canal at our office will not be painful. If you feel any pain, we will stop the procedure immediately and make you more numb.

If a diseased or damaged pulp is not removed, the tooth and surrounding tissues may become inflamed and/or infected, eventually resulting in an abscess. Left untreated, ultimately the tooth will have to be removed.

Our own natural teeth are always best. Authorities agree that artificial substitutes do not function or appear quite as well as natural teeth. In addition, extraction and replacement is usually much more costly.

No. The tooth has two blood supplies. The pulp supply will be gone, but the other supply that comes from the surrounding tissues, which supplies the root surface will continue to function.

Root canal therapy is often performed in one or two visits and involves the following steps:

  • Local anesthetic is administered
  • A small opening is made in the crown of your tooth ~- Very small instruments are used to remove the pulp from the pulp chamber and root canals
  • Root canals are filled with a biocompatible material called gutta percha. A temporary filling is placed to close the opening; your general dentist will replace this with a permanent restoration

No. Modern dental radiography is the safest form of radiology used in medicine today. Before, during, and after root canal treatment, usually a total of only four to five x-ray films will be necessary.

Again, there’s no need for concern. We adhere to the most rigorous standards of infection control advocated by OSHA, the Centers for Disease Control and the American Dental Association. We utilize autoclave sterilization and barrier techniques to eliminate any risk of infection.

When your root canal therapy has been completed, a record of your treatment will be sent to your restorative dentist. You should contact his office for a follow-up restoration within a few weeks of completion at our office. Your restorative dentist will decide on what type of restoration is necessary to protect your tooth. It is rare for endodontic patients to experience complications after routine endodontic treatment or microsurgery. If a problem does occur, however, we are available at all times to respond.

Although you will most likely be numb for 2-4 hours following the procedure, most patients are able to return to school or work directly following a root canal. However, it is advised against eating until the numbness is completely gone. 

The cost varies depending on how complex the problem is and which tooth is affected. Molars are more difficult to treat; the fee is usually more. Most dental insurance policies provide some coverage for endodontic treatment.

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