Quyen D. Chang, DDS
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Root Canals

When a tooth is infected because of a deep cavity, the tooth can not only cause dental pain, but the infection can potentially spread to the rest of the body if not treated as soon as possible. The best way to treat this infection and keep the tooth is with root canal treatment. During root canal treatment, the nerve and blood supply of the tooth is removed from inside the tooth and replaced with a filling material. This removes the source of the infection and will also remove the dental pain, allowing for the remaining healthy tooth structure to be saved.

Root canal treatments are also done in other situations, including: a tooth that has been traumatized by a bump or accident, a cracked tooth where the crack has not extended too far down to the root of the tooth, or if there is not enough tooth structure left for a crown and a post needs to be placed in the tooth to support the crown.

When root canal treatment is done, typically a significant amount of tooth structure has to be removed because of decay or for other reasons. Furthermore, because the nerves and blood supply of the tooth has been removed, the tooth can be more brittle and susceptible to cracking. For those reasons, a tooth that has received root canal treatment oftentimes requires a crown to help hold the tooth together. If not much tooth structure has been removed, however, a crown can sometimes be avoided.

Our office performs most root canal treatments, but if a tooth has complex root structures or we feel that it would be better treated at a specialist's office, we can refer you to an endodontist, a dentist who specializes in performing root canal treatments, for excellent treatment.