Root Canal Therapy

River Oak Dental Spa

General Dentists & Cosmetic Dentists located in Oakdale, CA

Root canal therapy is one of the best ways to restore your oral health if you have a tooth that’s severely damaged or decayed. Christina Tourtlotte, DDS, and the team of dedicated dentists at River Oak Dental Spa administer safe and effective root canals for their patients in Oakdale, California. To learn more about how a root canal can improve the health of your mouth, schedule a visit by phone or web today.

Root Canal Therapy Q & A

What is root canal therapy?

Root canal therapy is a treatment to save a tooth with a nerve that’s suffering from decay or infection. It involves removing your tooth’s inner tissue and filling the resulting space with medications and special dental materials.

Unlike an extraction, a root canal restores your tooth to its full function while enabling you to maintain much of your natural tooth structure. This is particularly advantageous because extracting a tooth can lead to other oral health concerns unless you replace it with another procedure. 


What are the signs that I need root canal therapy?

If you have tooth decay or damage that’s spread to the nerve of your tooth, you need a root canal. Some of the common signs and symptoms of a damaged or infected tooth include:

  • Severe pain in your tooth
  • Increased sensitivity to hot and cold
  • Abscess or pimple on your gums
  • Swelling and/or tenderness in your gums

In some instances, you might need a root canal without showing any sort of noticeable symptoms. Dr. Tourtlotte and the team at River Oak Dental Spa can perform a thorough analysis of your teeth to determine whether or not you need treatment.


What is involved in root canal therapy?

Dr. Tourtlotte and the team at River Oak Dental Spa perform root canal therapy as an in-office procedure, occasionally referring cases out to specialists if needed.

To start, your dentist numbs your tooth with a local anesthetic and isolates it with a rubber dental dam. Then, they use a drill to open up an access hole in the top of your tooth and remove the pulp, nerve tissue, and bacteria within using a series of root canal files. 

Next, your dentist cleans and sterilizes the inside of your tooth and fills the empty space with a special material called gutta-percha. With your tooth cleaned and filled, they close up the access hole in the top with a filling. Finally, they fit your tooth with a crown to strengthen it and restore its full function. 


Is root canal therapy painful?

Root canal therapy has an undeserved reputation as being a painful procedure, with movies and TV shows historically exaggerating the discomfort of the procedure. In reality, you will hardly feel your root canal because you’ll be anesthetized throughout the entire treatment.

To learn more about root canal therapy, or to schedule your procedure today, call the River Oak Dental Spa office or book a visit online.