Root Canal Therapy

What is a root canal?

Root canal treatment is one of the most common dental procedures performed, well over 14 million every year. This simple treatment can save your natural teeth and prevent the need of dental implants or bridges.

At the center of your tooth is pulp. Dental pulp is a specialized connective tissue that contains nerve fibers, fine blood vessels and cells. Inflammation and Infection of the pulp can be caused by trauma to the tooth, deep decay, cracks and chips, or repeated dental procedures. Common symptoms that are often indicative of pulpal inflammation are sensitivity to temperature, spontaneous throbbing pain and pain upon biting.

If you experience any of these symptoms, your dentist will most likely recommend non-surgical treatment to eliminate the diseased pulp. This injured pulp is removed and the root canal system is thoroughly cleaned and sealed. This therapy involves local anesthesia and may be completed in one or more visits depending on the treatment required. Success rate for this type of treatment depends on several factors and is generally very high. If your tooth is not amenable to endodontic treatment or the chance of success is unfavorable, you will be informed at the time of consultation or when a complication becomes evident during or after treatment. 

An example of a healthy tooth
Healthy Tooth
A tooth anatomy diagram highlighting pulp dentin and canal
Tooth Anatomy
A visual of tooth inflammation showing tooth decay and a inflamed pulp
A representation of a tooth with its canals cleaned
Cleaned Canals
An illustration of root canal filling of a tooth
Filling Placed
An example of a tooth healed by root canal therapy
Healed Tooth

What happens after treatment?

Endodontic treatment has now been completed. The root canal system has been permanently sealed. However, the outer surface might be sealed with a temporary restoration per your general dentist’s request. A permanent restoration must be placed to protect your tooth against fracture and decay. Please telephone your restorative dentist for an appointment. In some cases, where applicable, we will place the final restoration or perform the bonded build up procedure and make the tooth ready for a crown which will be done by your dentist. Occasionally a post is required to retain the core build up material in the tooth. Your restorative dentist will determine the appropriate restoration to best protect your tooth. A complete report of treatment will be sent to your restorative dentist. Recall appointments are required to evaluate the progress of healing. You can make the first appointment for the follow up exam at the completion of your endodontic treatment or our office will contact you in six months.

How much will it cost?

The cost associated with this procedure can vary depending on factors such as the severity of damage to the affected tooth and which tooth is affected. In general, endodontic treatment is much less expensive than tooth removal and replacement with an artificial tooth.