Root Canal Therapy in Sunnyvale

Root Canal TherapyComfortable and thorough Root Canals

We use various high-tech equipment to make the root canal procedure quick, comfortable and thorough. This includes a rotary file to prepare the canals and an ultrasonic scaler to gently clean them out.

We also use our Cone Beam CT scanner that produces 3D X-rays for a full 360º view of the tooth, bone and gum. In this way we can make a correct assessment of what needs to be done to save the tooth, and know if there is another treatment that would be workable.

To make an appointment, call 408‑245‑5812 or click here to request an appointment online.

What is Root Canal Therapy?

A root canal is a pulp-filled cavity in the root of a tooth. A tooth root can have one or more canals in it.

Root canal therapy is performed to save a tooth that has become infected. The infected pulp is removed, the inside of the tooth is carefully cleaned and disinfected and it is filled with a rubber-like material. We often place a crown on the tooth to protect it if it has become weakened as a result of the infection.

Although the root itself is now dead, the tooth can continue to function as it is nourished by the tissues surrounding it. Doing a root canal to save a tooth has the advantage of maintaining efficient chewing and normal biting forces and maintains the adjacent teeth in position.

How Is A Root Canal Performed?

Root canal therapy is only about as invasive as having a cavity filled. With numbing and sedation, we can ensure that you remain completely comfortable throughout the whole process.
Your root canal appointment will usually take 1-2 hours.

First, Dr. Au will numb and clean the area around the treatment site. Then, your tooth will be isolated with a dental dam to prevent bacteria and infected tooth material from spreading throughout your mouth. Once your mouth is numb, Dr. Au will use specialized tools to remove decayed and damaged enamel from your tooth.

Once all of the decayed and damaged material has been removed, it will be flushed with a disinfecting solution to remove any additional remaining bacteria, and rinsed. Once the tooth is clean, it will be filled with a special rubber-like substance called “gutta-percha.” This material replaces your pulp and helps support the structure of your tooth. Typically, your tooth will also be capped with a temporary crown.

Signs you need a Root Canal

Root Canal TherapyA root canal is needed when the pulp is infected, which usually results in pain and possibly an abscess. Sometimes you won’t notice any pain but persistent pain is a definite symptom.

Another definite sign is if you have swelling around the gum line, an abscess near the tooth or a pimple. The tooth can also become discolored.

Pain that is sporadic is also an indicator, such as when there is:

  • Tenderness at the bottom of the root
  • Pain in response to heat and cold that lasts several minutes
  • A tooth that hurts to bite on
  • Spontaneous pain from no apparent trigger

Post-Root Canal Care

After a root canal, it’s common to experience minor pain and discomfort. Dr. Au will send you home with post-care instructions, which will ensure that you can manage your pain and recover quickly. As the numbing medication used on your mouth starts to wear off, you’ll likely feel some tenderness in the treatment area and some mild soreness or pain in your jaw. If Dr. Au has provided you with a prescription painkiller, take it as directed. Otherwise, you can take some over-the-counter medicine like Tylenol (acetaminophen) Motrin (ibuprofen) or Advil (naproxen).

Avoid eating after your treatment until your mouth is no longer numb, to prevent yourself from accidentally biting your cheek or tongue. You should continue to brush and floss normally. However, if your tooth has not been fully restored (you’re still waiting to have a permanent crown placed) you should avoid chewing with it to ensure you do not accidentally damage it.

In most cases, any pain or discomfort you’re experiencing will go away in just a few days. However, if you are still experiencing discomfort such as severe pain or pressure that lasts more than a few days post-root canal, you notice the previous symptoms of your infected tooth returning, or you notice symptoms like swelling inside or outside your mouth, or an uneven or strange-feeling bite, you may need to schedule a follow-up at Silicon Valley Dental Associates.

To make an appointment, call 408‑245‑5812 or click here to request an appointment online.