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On this page you will find:
What is root canal treatment? How long will the restored tooth last?
What does root canal treatment involve? Root Canal Therapy
What are the steps in the process of saving the tooth?  

What is root canal treatment?

Root canal treatment usually involves the removal of the tooth's pulp, a small thread-like tissue that was important for tooth development. The pulp is a soft tissue that contains the blood vessels, nerves and connective tissue of the tooth. It lies in the canal that runs through the center of the dentin-- the hard tissue on the inside of the tooth that supports the outer layer of the tooth enamel. The crown (the portion of the tooth visible above the gums) contains the pulp chamber. The pulp extends from the chamber down through the root canal to the tip of the root that lies in the bone of the jaws. Teeth have only one pulp chamber but may have more than one root in several root canals.

What does root canal treatment involve?

Treatment involves one or more visits. There are several steps in the process of endodontic treatment that your general dentist or endodontist (a dentist who specializes in root canal treatment) will perform. At various stages, your follow-up will be needed to help ensure a successful outcome.

What are the steps in the process of saving the tooth?

  1. First, local anesthesia is given so that you will be more comfortable during treatment. Then, an opening is made through the crown of the tooth into the pulp chamber.
  2. The pulp or its remnants are then removed carefully from both the pulp chamber and the root canal(s). The root canal(s) is cleaned and shaped to a form that can be filled.
  3. Medication may be put in the pulp chamber and root canal(s) to help eliminate bacteria.
  4. A temporary filling will be placed in the crown opening to prevent saliva from getting into the chamber and root canal(s). You might also be given antibiotics if infection is present and has spread beyond the end of the root(s). If your dentist has prescribed medication, use it only as directed. If you have any difficulties with the medication, call your dentist. It is also important to follow you're dentist's directions regarding the scheduling of your next dental appointment.
  5. During the next stage of treatment the temporary filling is removed. The root canal(s) is filled with a biocompatible material, usually gutta-percha, and then sealed.
  6. In the final step, a crown made of porcelain or metal alloy is usually placed over the tooth. The crown covers a tooth to restore it to its normal shape and size. Its purpose is to strengthen the tooth and improve its appearance.
*Depending on diagnosis, procedures may be reduced to one appointment

How long will the restored tooth last?

As long as the root(s) of a treated tooth is nourished by the tissues around it, your tooth can remain healthy. However, the tooth could still become decayed, so good oral hygiene at home and regular dental exams are necessary to help prevent both tooth decay and periodontal (gum) disease.


An abscessed (infected) tooth caused by tooth decay.


An opening is made through the crown of the tooth into the pulp chamber.

The pulp is removed, and the root canals are cleaned, enlarged, and shaped.

The root canals are filled.

A metal post may be placed in the root canal for structural support.
The pulp chamber is sealed; then the crown of the tooth is restored.

Root Canal Therapy

Post-Op Soreness
If you have had Root Canal Treatment on a tooth, it is normal to experience soreness upon biting or chewing. The process of Root Canal Therapy is known to bruise the ligaments around the roots of the tooth being treated. This bruising can cause cold sensitivity, and soreness upon pressure. This is alleviated by taking THREE 200 mg Ibuprofen tablets (Advil) every 4-6 hours. The key to successfully conquering the discomfort is to not wait until the pain is present. Consistently take the Ibuprofen every 4-6 hours for several days. This soreness can last for approximately 1 week (like any bruise).

Persistent Soreness
If the soreness persists for longer than 1 week, or if it's noticed mainly in the morning or in the middle of the night, then you probably are hitting high on your temporary crown or foundation. If this is the case, please contact your dentist to schedule an appointment for adjustments to be made on your temporary. This is a minor procedure that takes just a few minutes to do. It is very important that you feel like all of your teeth come together evenly on both sides of your mouth. If you feel you are hitting this tooth first, then an adjustment must be made.





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SLEEP is Physiologic, Sedation is Pharmacologic.  SEDATON IS NOT SLEEP and we at Sedation Dental Care make no implication that the two are the same in any way. We are extensively trained in sedation and exceed the boards oral sedation requirements by 5 times. We are qualified to sedate you not put you sleep. Please note we do provide General Anesthesia for those who qualify and need more then basic oral and IV sedation.

Please note there are only 7 recognized specialties in dentistry. Sedation, Cosmetics and Treating High Fear Patients are not included in board recognized specialties. We hope our hundreds of hours of Sedation, Emergency Training and Cosmetic Training coupled with hundreds of sedations we have done will allow us to give you the level of dentistry you are looking for.  When considering a dentist please always ask about credentials and training before you make a selection. We at Sedation Dental Care Hope you choose us and look forward to seeing you.

“Wake up to a Beautiful Smile” is a jingle not everyone wants a new smile. Beautiful Smile means different things to everyone and is based on your specific needs desires and qualifications. Not everyone is a candidate for cosmetic dentistry.  We will have a personalized smile evaluation to see if your smile desires are achievable and appropriate for you and your personal needs.

Sedation & Cosmetic General Dentists serving the Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill, Cary, Apex, Clayton, Garner, Smithfield, Knightdale, and Wake Forest area. Also providing Full Implant Restoration, Mini Dental Implant Placement, Denture Stabilization, Zoom ® whitening/bleaching, and most other general dentistry procedures.

3917 Sunset Ridge Rd.
Raleigh, NC 27607
Call: 783-9686  or  1-800-543-6853