Cherry Family Dental

Family Dentists located in South San Jose, San Jose, CA

If you have a significantly damaged or infected tooth, chances are you need a root canal. Misty Henne, DMD, and the team at Cherry Family Dental in South San Jose, California, work with an exceptional endodontist who performs safe and effective root canals that can make your smile healthy again. To get started, schedule an appointment today by calling the office or booking a visit online.

Endodontist Q & A

What is an endodontist?

In Greek, “endodontics” roughly translates to “inside the tooth.” An endodontist is a specialty dentist who treats the inner structures of your teeth, like your tooth’s pulp, arterioles, nerves, and tissues. In order to effectively perform procedures like root canal therapy, endodontists have to complete additional training after they’ve earned their dental degree.

What is root canal therapy?

Root canal therapy is a procedure that the team at Cherry Family Dental performs to treat a tooth with damaged or infected inner structures. It involves removing the damaged pulp from within your tooth, then sealing the inside of your tooth with a rubbery compound called gutta percha. 

In the past, the only way to treat a tooth with a diseased nerve was extraction. This is an effective treatment, and one that’s still used in extreme cases today, but root canal therapy gives your endodontist a chance to successfully treat your infected tooth while keeping more of your natural structures intact, which has certain benefits for your overall oral health.

What are some reasons I might need endodontic treatment?

You need endodontic treatment if the interior structures of your tooth are damaged. One of the most common causes of inner tooth damage is a bacterial infection of your tooth’s pulp, which can leave it inflamed and cause incredible pain. 

You might also need endodontic treatment if a significant portion of your tooth has become completely detached, as is the case in large fractures or chips. A knocked-out tooth might also require endodontic treatment once it’s successfully placed back in its socket.

What are the signs of damaged or infected tooth pulp?

Some of the symptoms of an endodontic problem include:

  • Discolored or darkened tooth
  • Pronounced or increased sensitivity to hot and cold substances
  • Toothache
  • Tender, swollen, or inflamed gums
  • Pain in the nearby lymph nodes that can’t be explained otherwise

If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms, schedule a visit with the team at Cherry Family Dental immediately. They can perform a more thorough assessment of your tooth, including digital X-rays and a 3D scan with the iTero® scanner, to determine if your tooth needs root canal therapy.

What happens during root canal therapy?

Cherry Family Dental is equipped to perform endodontic treatments on most teeth with in-office procedures for root canal therapy.

In the procedure, the team drills a small hole in the top of your tooth, then extracts your damaged pulp with a series of tiny files. They clean and sterilize the inside of your tooth, then fill it with a rubbery compound called gutta percha, effectively sealing it off from further infection.

Once your tooth is clean and sealed, they fill the hole that they drilled in the top and fit you with a dental crown to help maintain your tooth’s structural integrity. 

Get started with your root canal therapy today by calling the Cherry Family Dental office or scheduling a visit online.