Root Canal Therapy in Durham, NC

woman in pain after root canalEach tooth contains blood vessels and nerve tissue on the inside, which is referred to as the pulp of the tooth. If this pulpal tissue becomes irreversibly damaged, then endodontic treatment or a root canal may be recommended to remove the affected tissue. By removing the damaged pulp tissue and replacing it with a filling material, we can prolong the life of the tooth.

Endodontic treatment could be recommended for multiple reasons.

  • Severe tooth decay
  • Dental infection
  • Trauma that damages the nerve of the tooth

What to Expect from Root Canal Treatment

Root canal therapy is usually scheduled for a longer, two-hour appointment and is typically completed in one visit. The longer appointments are needed to allow time to properly remove all affected tissue, cleanse the tooth of any infection, and allow medications to be appropriately absorbed. The root is then filled with a special filling material that seals it off and prevents any re-infection.

Following the completion of the root canal, the tooth will need to be restored. Two of the most common restorative options are a simple composite resin restoration or a full coverage crown.

split tooth diagramWhile a simple restoration is sometimes sufficient to restore a root canaled tooth, we often recommend a full coverage crown.. When compared to a composite resin restoration, a crown provides greater strength that results in greater longevity and durability. Ultimately, a crown will typically increase the overall lifespan of the tooth.

Why Save a Tooth with Root Canal Therapy?

Every treatment plan our doctors make here at The Smile Shop will be comprehensive and inclusive. This means we want to educate you on every choice you have available to treat your smile and each tooth. When we recommend a root canal, it is because Dr. Spriggs and Dr. Dolin believe that the tooth has a favorable prognosis and can be saved. Alternatives to endodontic treatment include extraction and replacing with an implant, a bridge or a partial denture.

Signs That You Might Need a Root Canal

Sometimes there are no obvious symptoms that a root canal is needed. The pulp of the tooth can become irreversibly damaged with no symptoms at all! This is one reason why it’s so important to have routine checkups and x-rays.

A few signs that could indicate you need a root canal are pain, a "pimple" on the gums, or a foul taste or odor. It’s often difficult to analyze a tooth with just these symptoms alone. At The Smile Shop, we use thorough examination techniques to accurately diagnose the tooth to ensure endodontic therapy is the recommended treatment.

Please Call to Arrange an Appointment

If you’ve noticed any of the above symptoms and believe you may need a root canal, please contact our office to schedule a consultation.