Three Convenient Locations
Each tooth is divided into two structural components: the crown, or portion which we see above the gingival or gum tissues, and the root portion which lies within the jaw or facial bones. Inside each tooth is tissue known as the dental pulp which is composed of nerve fibers and an internal blood supply, and is responsible for the growth and development of our teeth when we are children. The dental pulp exits within the crown and roots, with the bulk of the tissue housed in the pulp chamber of the crown and traveling down the roots through narrow channels known as root canals.
When the pulpal tissues become inflamed or infected as a result of injury, decay, periodontal disease, or fracture, a tooth ache may often, though not always, develop. Instead of removing the involved tooth, it is possible to remove the damaged pulp, allowing the tooth to remain a part of the functioning dentition. Endodontic treatment, or root canal therapy, involves preserving a tooth by removing unhealthy internal tissue.
Non-surgical root canal therapy is performed by removal of the pulp with cleansing and shaping of the root canals, and the filling or sealing of the canals to promote healing. The entire process is accomplished by working through a small opening created in the chewing surface of the tooth, similar to that of a filling. If the involved tooth is restored with a crown, the opening into the pulp is created through the crown. The canals are cleansed and shaped with a series of small instruments, and filled using an inert rubber material that is heated and condensed to help insure proper sealing of the canals. Complete treatment is usually accomplished in a single appointment. Complications such as swelling and pain do not occur routinely; however, tenderness may develop after treatment.
We maintain a 95% success rate with non-surgical root canal therapy completed in our Southlake or Arlington offices. However, some people present with treatment having been started or even completed in another office, with symptoms still present. If you have had treatment initiated or completed in another office, and you are still experiencing symptoms, please call us. We are here to assist you in your treatment needs.