Root Canals


Fixing An Infected Tooth

Distinctive Dentistry can perform root canal therapy, when necessary in our office. Root canal therapy is sometimes necessary when the inside of the tooth has been damaged by injury, decay, or disease.

Root Canal

Root Canal Explained

While dental cavities are unwanted, surprisingly, your teeth have a vital, natural cavity located in your tooth – the “root canal.” The root canal contains a soft area known as the pulp, or pulp chamber, and the nerve of the tooth. Your root canal area serves as the housing for the nerves that detect feelings of hot and cold. As great as it is to experience hot and cold sensations, sometimes, dental problems will necessitate the removal of the nerve. Do not be concerned. Although your tooth will no longer sense hot and cold, it can still function properly and support good dental health.

When Would I Need a Root Canal?

You need a root canal if time, injury, decay, or disease has damaged the nerve and tissues inside of your tooth. How do these conditions occur inside your tooth? If you develop cracks, breaks, or large cavities on the outer structure of your tooth, then these conditions allow the pulp area of your tooth to be exposed to elements that damage the nerve and pulp tissue. If the cracks, breaks, or cavities are not corrected, blood vessels and tissues inside your tooth can become infected.

The function of these blood vessels and tissues are to transport nutrients and waste to and from the tooth. However, if they are infected, an appropriate dental recommendation is to eliminate the infected inner area to preserve the tooth. Older dental treatments required the complete extraction of the tooth, but newer technology and sedation dentistry allows Distinctive Dentistry to perform a procedure called a root canal. Serving the Edmonds, Mountlake Terrace, Lynnwood, and North Seattle, WA, area, Dr. Zachary Streit can retain and restore your tooth for you with minimal discomfort and usually in a single office visit.

Symptoms of a Root Canal

Most of the time, a root canal starts with an agonizing toothache, but, on occasion, the symptoms indicating a root canal treatment may be present only to Dr. Streit during your checkup. In these cases, his recommendation may surprise you because you are not experiencing any aches or pains. With his extensive training and education, Dr. Streit can determine if your dental health warrants root canal treatment. The following are symptoms that may require a root canal.

  • You have gums that are swollen and tender.
  • You have teeth that darken.
  • Your gums develop a white bump, resembling a pimple.
  • Your teeth sense a lingering pain when exposed to hot or cold foods or drinks.
  • Your teeth create intense pain while chewing.

What is the Root Canal Procedure?

The root canal procedure requires Dr. Streit to eliminate the affected nerves and surrounding tissue inside of your tooth. Once removed, he cleans and closes the interior area of your tooth. Then, Dr. Streit pours a synthetic dental composite into the cavity that replaces the removed pulp tissue and nerve. Finally, he seals the outer surface of your tooth to prevent foreign elements from entering the root canal area. Usually, Distinctive Dentistry recommends strengthening the repaired tooth with a dental crown.

What Happens after the Root Canal?

A root canal can be an invasive and intricate procedure. The root canal procedure can irritate the tissue surrounding your tooth. Therefore, it is not unusual for your tooth to be sensitive for a few days after the procedure, especially if your tooth had infection or pain before the root canal. Distinctive Dentistry will recommend anti-inflammatory medications and pain medications to help you cope during these days, and even though you may experience some minor uneasiness, normally, you can resume normal activities the next day.

Rest assured, when you have your root canal and when you maintain good dental health, your restored tooth can last a lifetime.