Root canals provide a safe and effective way to remove damaged or infected tooth pulp, preserving your oral health and preventing the need for an extraction. At The Dental Design Studios, Ivis Hernandez, DDS, performs root canals on adults and teens. Her extensive knowledge and expertise ensure healthy smiles and positive outcomes. To schedule an appointment at the practice in Houston, Texas, call the office or book online.
Root canals are a type of endodontic treatment used to preserve an infected or damaged permanent tooth.
During a root canal, Dr. Hernandez removes the soft center of a tooth, called the pulp. Pulp helps your permanent teeth develop but isn’t necessary for their long-term survival.
After removing the pulp, Dr. Hernandez caps your tooth with a crown. The restoration restores your chewing and biting abilities while preventing further damage.
Root canals treat infected or damaged tooth pulp. Infection or damage can occur for a variety of reasons, including:
Early on, pulp damage doesn’t always cause symptoms. As the condition progresses, you might experience a sensation of heat in your gums or swelling and pain that doesn’t respond to conservative treatments like ice or over-the-counter medication.
At The Dental Design Studios, root canals take two appointments spaced about a week apart.
Before performing a root canal, Dr. Hernandez conducts an oral exam and asks about your symptoms. Then, she takes a series of oral X-rays to assess your tooth and to determine the extent of the infection or decay.
Next, Dr. Hernandez administers a local anesthetic to numb your mouth. She accesses your affected tooth and carefully removes the soft center (pulp). After removing the pulp, Dr. Hernandez rinses the center of your tooth with an antibiotic solution. The solution eliminates harmful bacteria, lowering the risk of another infection.
Finally, she fills your tooth with a sponge-like material called gutta-percha. When the gutta-percha dries, Dr. Hernandez takes impressions of your tooth. She sends your impressions to a dental laboratory that creates a custom crown. Before you leave the office, Dr. Hernandez applies a temporary crown to your treated tooth.
About a week later, you return to The Dental Design Studios. Dr. Hernandez removes your temporary crown and replaces it with a permanent one. After bonding the crown in place, she assesses your bite, polishes your teeth, and provides care instructions.
After a root canal, it’s normal to experience some mild swelling and increased sensitivity. For the first few days, avoid biting down or chewing with your temporary crown. Take any medication as prescribed and continue to brush and floss, just do so gently around your treated tooth.
To further explore root canals, make an appointment at The Dental Design Studios. Call the office and speak with a member of the administrative staff or book online today.