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Root Canals

Root canals may be used to save extensively damaged teeth.  Inside your tooth, there is soft, living tissue that contains blood vessels and nerves called the pulp.  When the pulp is injured or diseased and cannot repair itself it dies.  Pulpal injury or disease is commonly caused by deep cavities, cracked teeth, trauma, or problems from a previous restoration.  Rather than extracting this damaged tooth, Dr. V or Dr. Megan may be able to save your tooth with a root canal.

Root canals may take one or more dental visits to complete.  First, the tooth is numbed.  An opening is made through the biting surface of the tooth into the pulp chamber.  The injured pulp is removed through a process called cleaning and shaping.  Once clean, the roots are filled with a rubber-like material called gutta-percha.  Finally, the tooth is restored with a filling and/or a crown to allow you to regain function and to improve the strength and appearance of the restored tooth.  With the use of antibiotics when necessary, and strong anesthetics during the procedure, root canals are now a relatively painless procedure.

For more information about root canals from the ADA, click the PatientSmart box below.

ADA Patient Smart
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