endodonticsEndodontics

Endodontic treatment, also known as root canal therapy is a procedure used to save an infected tooth. Inside the tooth, is an area of soft tissue called the pulp which carries the tooth’s nerves, veins, arteries and lymph vessels. Root canals are very small, thin divisions that branch off from the top pulp chamber down to the tip of the root. A tooth has at least one, but usually no more than four root canals.

DENTAL ROOT CANAL FAQS - Click on the questions to learn more.

A: There are many reason to recommend root canal therapy.
  • to preserve a tooth from an infected nerve
  • to treat teeth involved in physical trauma
  • for the relief of toothache pain, etc.
endodontics-chart

Since a tooth will not heal by itself, the option of doing a root canal will prevent tooth infection from spreading, prevent bone degeneration, and pain worsening. The only alternative is usually extraction of the tooth which causes surrounding teeth to shift crookedly, resulting in a bad bite. Although an extraction is cheaper, the space left behind will require an implant or a bridge, which can be more expensive than root canal therapy. Root canal therapy is a way to remove the damaged or dead pulp and allows you to keep your original tooth.

A: The absence of pain is not necessarily an indication that all is well with your teeth. In fact, most teeth that need root canal therapy won't give you pain.
A: Once the root canal therapy is completed, natural tissue inflammation may cause discomfort for a few days, which can be controlled by over the counter pain medicines. Typically a gold or porcelain crown is placed over the tooth to strengthen it's structure and improve appearance. From this point on, you just brush and floss regularly, avoid chewing hard foods on the treated tooth and see your dentist regularly.