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What Happens During Root Canal Treatment?

What Happens During Root Canal Treatment?

If you have a toothache, it could be caused by a cavity, which is a damaged area of the hard surface of the tooth. Once a cavity fully penetrates the hard enamel outer layer of the tooth, the bacteria can make its way into the soft tissue of the tooth, called the pulp. Once this occurs, it threatens the health of the tooth and can lead to tooth sensitivity, pain, or tooth loss. A root canal is performed to stop the spread of infection and save the tooth. Although many people have heard of this dental procedure, you may be interested to know how it is performed and what you can expect if your dentist decides you need a root canal.

What You Need To Know About Root Canals

What Is A Root Canal?
Root canal treatments are a form of restorative dentistry performed when the pulp (the soft tissue inside the tooth) becomes infected, inflamed, or otherwise damaged. By removing this damaged tissue, a root canal can help save the tooth from falling out or prevent the infection from spreading. 

Please note: if you have a toothache and develop an accompanying fever, swelling of the face, chest pain, trouble breathing, or trouble swallowing, call your dentist for same-day emergency dentistry services. This is a sign your infection has spread and it requires immediate attention.

The Root Canal Process
Before your root canal begins, you will receive local anaesthetic to numb the treatment area. Once this takes effect, your dentist will use an endodontic bur to open the inside of the tooth and get to the root. Your dentist will then explore the inside of the tooth and remove the damaged or infected tissue within the centre of the tooth root. Dental drills may need to be used on larger teeth, such as molars, and the tooth canals may need to be widened so all damaged or infected tissues can be properly removed. Once your canal is cleaned of all damaged tissue, it is disinfected to ensure that all harmful bacteria within the tooth is removed so that reinfection does not occur. Next, the tooth is filled with a biocompatible rubber-like material called gutta-percha. This material is softer than the dental cement used to fill and seal the top layer of the tooth so that it can mimic the natural pulp of the tooth and keep your mouth comfortable. The dental cement sealing in the gutta-percha and creating a hard finish to imitate your natural tooth may need to be ground down a bit after it is applied so that it is the same size and shape as your original tooth. The whole process should only take about an hour.

Save Your Tooth With A Root Canal

If you have a pulp infection, a root canal is the optimal way to save your natural tooth. If you suspect you may need a root canal in Calgary, visit Marlborough Dental Centre. Our NE Calgary dentists have years of experience performing root canals and our gentle approach and focus on your comfort will ensure you have a stress-free treatment. Root canal treatment is quick and easy, with administered localized anaesthesia so that you don’t feel any pain or discomfort. Our Calgary dentists will quickly and effectively remedy your abscessed tooth to keep you healthy and stop the pain caused by infection and inflammation. To schedule an appointment with a Calgary dentist, contact Marlborough Dental Centre at 1-403-248-2066 or fill out the online contact form.


Q: How long is the recovery from a root canal procedure?
A: Most patients recover from a root canal within a few days of the procedure. In rare cases, some patients may experience complications that can delay the healing progress.

Q: Do I need to do anything to prepare for my root canal procedure?
A: The local anaesthesia will take a while to wear off and you may find eating and drinking difficult after your root canal so make sure you drink water and eat food before the procedure. For more information, read Tips To Help You Prepare For Your Root Canal Procedure.

Q: How successful are root canals?
A: While the success rate depends greatly on individual circumstances, the typical success rate for root canals to alleviate pain and solve the issue ranges between 85-95%.

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