Root Canal


Diagram of tooth showing tooth rootHere at Perrinville Family Dentistry we conduct root canal procedures to restore the functionality of severely damaged teeth. The root canal is a procedure used to treat a tooth that has been severely damaged by tooth decay. Tooth decay is, in most cases, a result of poor oral hygiene.

Tartar accumulates on the teeth over time and allows bacteria to thrive. The bacteria produce an acid that eats into the tooth, causing it to decay. When decay continues for a long time, it affects the root of the tooth, including the center part of the root called the pulp. The pulp is full of nerves and capillaries that supply blood around the tooth.

Root canal procedures also prevent the decay from spreading to the adjacent teeth. The procedure involves removing the decayed or dead tissue from the tooth and disinfecting the tooth to kill all bacteria. If the pulp is infected, it is removed. A tooth can still function and remain strong without the pulp.

The Root Canal Procedure


Our expert endodontists conduct the procedure in four major steps. First, the procedure is conducted under local anesthesia to ensure you do not have to deal with any sort of discomfort. Second, our endodontist drills the top of your tooth to access the decayed parts.

They will etch out all the decayed material on the tooth, including the pulp if it has been affected. After the etching, a hollow cavity will be left. The third step involves cleaning and disinfecting the tooth to ensure no bacteria survive. After the disinfection, the cavity is filled up with a material called gutta percha. It is a composite-resin material. A temporary cap is used to seal off the top while you await a permanent crown to be made for you.

The final step is the placement of the permanent crown, which is often done a few weeks after the actual root canal procedure. A few weeks are allowed for the filling to settle in and the tooth to strengthen. The crown is attached to restore the natural shape of the tooth and further strengthen the tooth.

Is a Root Canal a Painful Procedure?


One of the biggest misconceptions about root canals procedure is that it is excruciatingly painful. Understandably, if you think about how your tooth will be drilled, and some tissue full of nerves extracted, you get scared. It is a misconception, however. As mentioned above, the first step our endodontist takes before commencing the procedure is numbing you with local anesthesia. The process itself should be painless.

You may feel a bit of a pinch after the anesthesia starts to wear off, but it should not be as excruciating as you might have been led to imagine. In any case, our endodontist will recommend some pain medication, just in case it occurs. Call Perrinville Family Dentistry at (425) 616-0620 today and talk to one of our team members about any oral health concerns that you might have.
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