Root Canal Therapy

What is a root canal?

graphic showing a tooth abscessA root canal is one of the most common dental procedures, with over 14 million performed annually. In most cases, this simple treatment can save your natural teeth and prevent the need of dental implants or bridges.

At the center of your tooth is pulp, a collection of nerves and blood vessels that help build the surrounding tooth. Infection of the pulp can be caused by trauma to the tooth, deep decay, cracks and chips, or repeated dental procedures. Symptoms of infection can be identified as visible injury or swelling of the tooth, as well as sensitivity to temperature or pain in the tooth and gums.

graphic showing root canal treatment on a toothIf you experience any of these symptoms, your dentist will most likely recommend non-surgical treatment to eliminate the diseased pulp. This injured pulp is removed and the root canal system is thoroughly cleaned and sealed. This therapy usually involves local anesthesia and may be completed in one or more visits depending on the treatment required. Success for this type of treatment occurs in about 90% of cases. If your tooth is not amenable to endodontic treatment or the chance of success is unfavorable, you will be informed at the time of consultation or when a complication becomes evident during or after treatment. We use local anesthesia to eliminate discomfort.

What happens after treatment?

root  canal and crownWhen your root canal therapy has been completed, a record of your treatment will be sent to your restorative dentist. You should contact their office for a follow-up restoration within a few weeks of completion at our office. Your restorative dentist will decide on what type of restoration is necessary to protect your tooth. It is rare for endodontic patients to experience complications after routine endodontic treatment or microsurgery. If a problem does occur, however, we are available at all times to respond. Please call our office at 604-879-0661. To prevent further decay, continue to practice good dental hygiene.