When the center (pulp) or nerve of a tooth becomes either infected or badly decayed, root canal treatment is needed to save the tooth. Infection typically occurs when bacteria enters the inside of the tooth through a deep cavity. Another reason for a root canal is the tooth starts to hurt and become sensitive to hot and cold temperatures. If pain around the tooth lingers for some time, then there is a possibility that the tooth may need a root canal.

During the procedure, the nerve and the pulp is removed so that the tooth can be restored to health, and so that it functions as a normal tooth with no nerve. Usually a crown is needed to restore root canal teeth.


What Are the Benefits of Root Canal Therapy?

A root canal saves your tooth! It helps prevent the spread of infection and keeps your mouth healthy. We will always do anything we can in order to help you keep your teeth!


How Do I Know If I Need a Root Canal?

To determine if your tooth has infected pulp, we do a thorough examination typically with X-Rays. We also test to see whether the tooth is sensitive to temperature, has changed color, or if there is any discomfort with applied pressure.


What Are Some Symptoms of the Infection?

You may seek root canal therapy if you experience the following symptoms:

  • Lingering tooth sensitivity to hot or cold
  • Swollen area around the tooth
  • Pain near tooth with biting or pressure
  • A bad taste in your mouth


What Happens During a Root Canal?

After numbing the area completely, the dentist will make a hole in your tooth and use a dental file (tiny instrument) to carefully clean out the infected pulp. We use various small instruments to clean the root canals out and shape them properly. To ensure proper removal, digital X-Ray will be taken. Once the pulp removal is complete, we begin necessary steps to restore the tooth. In most cases, placing a crown on top of the remaining tooth is suggested. If the tooth is severely broken down, it may be necessary to start by building the tooth up first with composite material that acts like your tooth.


What Are Some Causes of the Infection?

The pulp becomes infected when bacteria invade the inner layers of the tooth. Infection mostly occurs through a deep cavity that lets the bacteria in through the enamel and dentin layers of the tooth and eventually into the pulp. Other times, the pulp simply dies due to a fracture or a blow to the tooth.


Is a Root Canal a Painful Procedure?

The dentist will numb your tooth and the surrounding area to make the visit as comfortable as possible, so you do not feel any pain. Our doctors have years of experience working with patients to alleviate their pain and knows how to be as gentle as possible. Our office also offers IV Sedation and Nitrous Gas during your procedure, so you can sleep during the procedure and relax.


Will the Tooth Hurt After the Appointment?

The amount of pain that you experience may vary, depending on your symptoms and the severity of the infection. The dentist may have to prescribe antibiotics and pain medication to help alleviate any pain if there is any. Most of the time, however, they are not needed. You can consult with your dentist or Dr. Brown for more information on care post-root canal therapy. Our doctors will call you the day after your appointment to ensure that everything went well and you are doing fine.