St. Charles, MO Root Canal Therapy

Root canals are performed when a tooth has become significantly infected or inflamed. Root canals will limit the infection and stop it from completely destroying the tooth. During the procedure, the dentist will remove all infected tissue, clean, disinfect, and shape the root canal space, and then fill and seal the root canal space.

Root canals can take one or more appointments at our St. Charles dental practice to complete. Following the root canal procedure, our dentist will place a crown or other restoration to help protect the tooth and restore its function. We often recommend root canals over other dental treatments, such as extractions, because they allow you to keep your tooth, and that is always a good thing.

Why do I need a root canal?

Root canals have three main purposes:

  • Stop the cause of the toothache
  • Prevent pain and bacteria from spreading into the jaw
  • Restore the original tooth instead of replacing it

The root canal itself is channel that runs from the top of the tooth to the root of the tooth, which is connected to the bone. This canal contains nerves, complex cells, and blood vessels, which all make up the pulp or the tooth’s living tissue.

When teeth become cracked or decayed, bacteria reaches the pulp, causing the pulp to become irritated or inflamed. This process is similar to when other parts of the body become infected. When the pulp becomes inflamed, it becomes harder for your blood to flow to the tissue, resulting in excess pressure. It is this pressure that creates the pain. The root canal procedure will help alleviate this pain.

What are the most common signs of root canal disease?

Endodontic disease has a wide variety of symptoms. These can include:

  • Sensitivity to sweets
  • Swelling
  • Ongoing sensitivity to hot and/or cold liquids
  • Throbbing or severe pain
  • Pain when you bite
  • Pain in the temple, neck, or ear, transferred from the tooth
  • Spontaneous toothaches (not while eating or brushing the teeth)
  • Intermittent or constant pain
  • Pain in response to pressure changes (including when SCUBA diving or flying)
  • Pain when you change postures (for example, from standing to sitting)

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, contact us as soon as possible. While you may not have root canal disease, you may have another oral health problem caused by decay, periodontal disease, or defective fillings. Contact our St. Charles office today to learn more.