Root Canal Therapy

Feel Confident About Root Canal Therapy in Aurora, CO

Root canal therapy isn’t something to fear; it’s actually how the dental team at Associates in Family Dentistry saves your tooth from infection and decay. Although extracting a painful or rotting tooth may appear to be the easy solution, completely removing a tooth will ultimately be more expensive and cause significant problems for adjacent teeth down the line. When you pull a tooth, your remaining teeth won’t have the support they need when you talk and chew, and dental prostheses (false teeth), can be costly to create.

Performing a root canal procedure on one or more teeth might be the best option to preserve a tooth that otherwise would die and have to be removed, so schedule a consultation with our dentist in Aurora, CO, to find out what’s best for you.

What is a root canal?

A root canal is needed when the nerve of a tooth is permanently damaged by decay or infection. In order to save the tooth, the pulp (the living tissue inside the tooth), nerves, bacteria, and any decay are removed. The resulting space is then filled with sterile dental material to restore the original tooth to its full function. Root canal treatment is highly successful and usually lasts a lifetime, although on occasion, a tooth will have to be retreated due to new infections.

Should I get a root canal?

Sometimes you may not notice an infection within a tooth until it progresses to the late stages of pain and swelling. Visiting our office for regular checkups is the best way to ensure that a damaged tooth gets treated as quickly as possible. Preventative care can catch and treat problems before they become serious.

Root canals are needed when:

  • Decay has reached the tooth pulp (the living tissue inside the tooth)
  • An infection or abscess develops inside the tooth or at the root tip
  • Injury or trauma to the tooth damages the nerve

Signs and symptoms that you may need root canal therapy

Remember, a tooth infection is not always noticeable, but if you experience any of the following symptoms, it’s time to contact Associates in Family Dentistry:

  • An abscess (or pimple) on the gums
  • Sensitivity to hot and cold
  • Severe toothache pain
  • Swelling and/or tenderness

What to expect during a root canal procedure

A root canal procedure requires one or more appointments and can be performed by a dentist or endodontist (a root canal specialist). Using a local numbing agent, our dental team will make sure you feel as little discomfort as possible.

Once the tooth is numb, a rubber dam (a sheet of rubber) will be placed around the tooth to keep it dry and free of saliva. An access opening is drilled on top of the tooth and a series of root canal files are placed into the opening, one at a time, removing the pulp, nerve tissue, and bacteria.

Once the tooth is thoroughly cleaned, it will be sealed with either a permanent filling or, if additional appointments are needed, a temporary filling. After treatment, your tooth may still be sensitive, but this will subside as the inflammation diminishes and the tooth heals.

At the next appointment, usually a week later, the roots and cavity inside of the tooth will be filled and sealed with sterile dental materials. Then, the treated teeth are fitted with a porcelain crown or dental cap for protection. You will receive personalized care instructions after each appointment.

In general, it’s important to practice good oral hygiene with regular dental visits to protect your other teeth. If you are experiencing any tooth pain and/or sensitivity, turn to Associates in Family Dentistry in Aurora, CO. We’re committed to protecting your smile.

Call (303) 755-5768 to learn about root canal therapy.