Root Canal

Alhambra Family Dentistry

Dentist located in Alhambra, CA

If the thought of having a root canal makes you nervous, you’re not alone — root canals are commonly portrayed as the one dental procedure that almost everyone wants to avoid. Fortunately, root canal therapy isn’t nearly as scary as it’s made out to be; actually, it’s a lot like having a cavity filled. The expert team of dentists at Alhambra Family Dentistry in Alhambra, California provides tooth-saving root canal treatments to women and men in the Los Angeles area. If you have chronic tooth pain or sensitivity, call the office or schedule an appointment online today.

Root Canal Q & A

What is a root canal?

Root canal therapy, also known as endodontic treatment, is a simple procedure to repair the soft tissue, or pulp, deep inside your tooth. The primary goal of a root canal is to save a tooth that’s affected by decaying or infected pulp before it’s so damaged it requires removal.

Understanding how a root canal works requires a little bit of knowledge about your tooth’s structure.  

The soft pulp inside your tooth is beneath a hard layer of dentin and protective outer layer of enamel. The pulp is critical during early tooth development because it contains the blood vessels, nerves, and connective tissues that help create strong dentin and enamel layers.

If the pulp in one of your teeth becomes inflamed or infected, it can cause severe pain or lead to a major infection. Root canal therapy removes the problematic pulp and saves your natural tooth.

How do I know if I need a root canal?

Just as having poor oral hygiene habits and eating too much sugar can increase your risk of developing cavities, they can also increase your chances of needing a root canal.

You’re also more likely to require root canal therapy if you have cracked teeth, chipped teeth, or weak teeth that have undergone numerous dental procedures.

If you need a root canal, you may experience any of the following symptoms:

  • Throbbing or radiating toothache
  • Dull, prolonged toothache
  • Prolonged sensitivity to heat or cold
  • Tenderness while chewing
  • Unexplained tooth discoloration

If you notice any of these problems, make an appointment with your dentist at Alhambra Family Dentistry as soon as possible. Left untreated, inflammation or infection inside your tooth can only worsen and may spread to your jaw, neck, or head.

What is a root canal like?

Your dentist begins by numbing the treatment area with a local anesthetic to ensure you don’t feel any pain or discomfort during the procedure.

A root canal has three basic steps. First, your dentist removes the inflamed or infected pulp. Next, they clean and shape the root canal interior. Finally, they fill and seal the space. If you need a dental crown to restore full functionality, they also prepare your tooth for your crown.

Call Alhambra Family Dentistry today to learn more, or schedule an appointment using the convenient online booking feature.