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Root Canals


Root canals are not anything to be afraid of. In fact, every tooth has them. There is a space inside each tooth called the pulp chamber. It houses the living tissue (pulp) including the blood vessels, nerves, and connective tissues of the tooth. In the root of each tooth, there are small canals running to the jawbone these systems run through. Hence the term “root canal.” Only when the pulp gets infected is there something to worry about. This is where Dr. Calise and root canal therapy can save your tooth.

The Problem with Pulpal Infection

During childhood, the pulp is what creates the surrounding hard tissues of the tooth. Once the tooth is formed, the pulp is no longer vital, but it can still get infected when decay penetrates through the dentin and enamel. This is dangerous because infected pulp has access to other vital systems of the body, like the heart and lungs. So to prevent worse problems, the dentist must remove the infected tissue.

Signs of Damaged Pulp

Here are a few things to watch for:

  • Severe dental pain
  • Persistent toothache
  • Lasting sensitivity to hot or cold
  • Tooth discoloration not caused by staining
  • Recurring pimple-like sore on the gums
  • Redness or swelling of localized gums

What is Root Canal Therapy?

Root canal therapy (aka endodontic treatment) is the removal of decayed and infected tissue from the inside or a tooth and sealing the cavity off to prevent future damage. It is perhaps one of the most feared and misunderstood dental treatments. But without root canal therapy the tooth would likely require extraction because the tooth and surrounding tissues would become so infected. And, because of modern sedation and anesthesia, most patients undergo treatment with little to no discomfort.

Procedure for Root Canal Treatment

First, Dr. Calise will take x-rays of your teeth and mouth to assess the damage. He also needs to see the shape of the root canals and check for signs of infection in surrounding bone. Next, the dentist numbs the treatment area with local anesthetic. He drills an access hole in the top of the tooth, and removes damaged and decayed tissues and nerves.

Once clear, Dr. Calise cleans the inside of the tooth with antiseptic and makes sure it is completely dry before sealing it off. He then fills the root canal with a rubber compound to seal it and fills the access hole with a composite filling. For large fillings or extensive decay, Dr. Calise might also place a crown or other restoration on the tooth to restore full strength and function. The full process might take one or two appointments, depending on the extent of decay and treatment.

Choosing Dr. Calise for Root Canals

Every year dentists choose root canal therapy to save thousands of teeth. This procedure has an 80 to 98% success rate. It puts an end to pain and infection. It also maintains some of the natural structure of your teeth. You cannot afford to wait. Call our Avalon Dental Clinic today at 310-510-0322 and speak to one of our representatives about root canal procedure and associated costs.