What Is a Root Canal?
Endodontics, or root canal treatment, is a dental specialty that treats the inside of your tooth. When the source of your tooth pain goes beyond the enamel and deep into the root, your dentist will refer you to an endodontic specialist.
As endodontists, we specifically focus on the living tissue in each tooth called the dental pulp, which contains the tooth’s blood and nerve supply. The most important job of the dental pulp is the formation of dentin in between the enamel and the pulp when your teeth first erupt. The pulp then provides minor functions throughout the life of the tooth such as supplying moisture and nutrients, perceiving pain and forming more dentin – as long as it remains healthy. That’s where we step in with our expertise: to ensure your teeth are healthy all the way to their core.
When your dental pulp becomes diseased from tooth decay, dental work, traumatic injuries or bacterial leakage through micro-fractures, you may experience inflammation and/or infection of the pulp tissue and notice swelling, prolonged sensitivity to temperature changes or pain when you chew. If the inflammation or infection does not show any clinical symptoms, your dentist will diagnose the disease with x-rays and send them to us. Our goal is to identify the source of your tooth disease and to either save the tooth with a highly targeted endodontic treatment plan or to extract the offending tooth.
Millions of people experience endodontic therapy, or root canals, each year. The procedure consists of cleaning the canals in the tooth roots and sealing them to prevent recontamination of the bacteria that causes disease and subsequently the pain your experience. Using the latest endodontic technologies, we can do this in just one to two visits, though more challenging cases may require more appointments.