Root Canal

Root Canal Overview

Root CanalAn endodontic treatment saves a severely injured, cracked, or decayed tooth when its pulp (the soft inner tissue inside a tooth’s root canal) becomes inflamed or infected. If it is not treated promptly, pain or a tooth abscess results. Endodontic treatment is also known as a “root canal.”
Root canal treatment is completed in one or two office visits, depending on the presence of infection and the required treatment plan. After restoration, the tooth continues to function like any other tooth. With good oral hygiene, the restored tooth has the potential to last a lifetime. Call our office in Purcellville, VA today if you have a toothache to see if a root canal may be the right solution for you.

Warning Signs

See your Dentist if you experience any of these symptoms:

  • Tooth or gum pain, discoloration, or prolonged sensitivity to heat or cold

  • A tooth that is tender when it is touched

  • A tooth abscess (pus enclosed in the tissues of the jawbone at the tip of an infected tooth)

  • Pus drainage in your mouth

  • Swelling or tenderness in the lymph nodes under your jaw

Sometimes an endodontic problem can exist without warning signs. In these cases, an x-ray taken during a routine dental checkup will reveal the tooth damage.

Endodontic Treatment

Root canal treatment involves the removal of the diseased pulp along with the tooth’s nerve (located within a tooth’s root canal). The pulp chamber and root canal(s) of your tooth are then cleaned, medicated and sealed. A dental crown or other restorative treatment is used to protect and strengthen the tooth.

Patient Experience

After reviewing an x-ray of your tooth, your Purcellville Dentist will thoroughly examine your teeth, gums and supporting bone structure, recommend a treatment plan, discuss it with you, and answer your questions. If a root canal is needed:

  • A local anesthetic is applied to the affected tooth and surrounding area

  • A small, protective sheet called a “dental dam” is used to isolate the tooth to keep it clean and free of saliva during your procedure

  • An opening is made in the top of the tooth and your Purcellville Dentist will remove the soft pulp and nerve and then shape the interior for filling

  • The root canal is cleaned, medicated, and filled with a rubber-like biocompatible material (gutta percha)

  • A filling is then placed by your Purcellville Dentist

  • Your General Dentist will then place a permanent restoration, such as a crown, to protect the tooth