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Frequently Asked Questions
Root canal therapy "endodontics" is an advanced dental procedure on the inside (endo) of the tooth (dontic). An opening is made in the chewing surface of the tooth so that inflamed or infected pulp tissue can be removed. The root canal is cleaned, disinfected and shaped, then tightly sealed so that no bacteria can enter and re-infect the tooth.
Root canal therapy is quite common. Over 14 million teeth undergo endodontic therapy each year.
With modern anesthesia, most patients are comfortable during the procedure. After the procedure, the tooth may feel sore or sensitive, especially if there was pain or infection before the procedure. This discomfort can be relieved with over the counter or prescription medication. However, if you are experiencing swelling or severe pain, you should contact our office as soon as possible.
Advances in endodontics have made it possible to save teeth that would have been non-savable just a few years ago. However, sometimes a tooth cannot be saved because the root is severly fractured, there is bone loss, or the tooth is non-restorable.
Sometimes the pulp inside your tooth becomes inflamed or infected. This can be caused by deep decay, repeated dental procedures on the tooth, a crack or chip in the tooth, or a blow to the tooth.
Choosing a retreatment is an investment in keeping you natural tooth. Although modern tooth replacements are effective, you natural tooth is your best option, if possible.
An infected or injured tooth may cause you to be sensitive to hot or cold foods, or may cause pain when you bite or touch the tooth. You may awaken at night with severe pain and throbbing. Your gums may swell or become sensitive to touch near the affected tooth.
After the endodontic procedure is performed, special care should be taken with the treated tooth. For the first few days after treatment, do not chew or bite on the treated tooth until you have had a suitable restoration by you dentist, if necessary. You will need to see your dentist as soon as possible because the unrestored tooth is susceptible to fracture.
Some insurance companies will cover all or part of the retreatment fee, although some insurance companies have limitations in a given period of time. We will assist you in getting the most coverage possible by submitting a narrative explaining the reason for retreatment. As with all dental procedures, there is never a guarantee of payment until the insurance company receives and processes you claim.