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Root Canal Treatment

Root Canal Treatment in Idaho Falls

The American Association of Endodontists defines a root canal as a treatment used to remove inflamed or infected pulp on the inside of the tooth which is then carefully cleaned, disinfected and then sealed. Patients needing root canals are often in a lot of pain. A root canal properly performed can provide a lot of relief for the individual.

Root canal treatment is available at Sandcreek Dental, the Idaho Falls Dentists. This procedure can relieve dental pain and save your tooth. Call us at (208) 525-4780 to learn more about our services or schedule an appointment today.

Understanding Root Canals

Below the enamel and dentin, there is pulp at the center of a tooth. The pulp contains blood vessels, nerves, and connective tissue. When the pulp becomes injured or infected, the patient may experience swelling, infection, and pain. Even when outwardly apparent symptoms are not present, bacteria within the root canal may cause decay and damage to the jawbone. In many cases, a root canal may be necessary to save the tooth.

A root canal can remove the infected or inflamed pulp to prevent further issues. Various situations can call for a root canal, such as repeat dental work on the same tooth, cracks or chips, deep cavities, or a tooth injury. Signs that a patient may need root canal treatment include bumps along the gums, darkening gums, severe pain or sensitivity while biting or chewing, and swollen or tender gums. People should be aware that the signs of root canal infection or injury are not always obvious and that a thorough examination may be necessary for diagnosis.

Root Canal Treatment Benefits

The goal of root canal treatment is to save and preserve the natural tooth. One of the biggest benefits of root canals is getting rid of pain and infection in the mouth. Additional benefits include:

  • Pain Relief: – Many times when people come in needing a root canal they are suffering. The pain can be significant preventing people from sleeping, eating or functioning normally. Root canals provide a variety of other medical benefits but the patients will likely say the immense relief they feel post procedure is the most important.
  • Improved Appearance: – After root canal treatment, the patient will receive a crown or filling that restores their tooth’s aesthetic appearance. Conditions needing a root canal may have other negative appearances including swollen guns.
  • Reduced Risk for Further Decay: – Removal of the infected dental pulp prevents the bacteria from spreading and damaging the surrounding teeth.
  • Restored Function: – Root canals restore a tooth’s health to function like any other tooth.
  • Prevent Need for Tooth Extraction: – Nothing can replace the look and function of a natural tooth. Sometimes people are in such pain they feel that removing the tooth entirely is the only solution. Root canals can often eliminate the pain and preserve the natural tooth which is advantageous.

The Root Canal Process

A root canal treatment generally consists of the following steps:

  1. The dental professional examines the tooth using x-rays, then administers local anesthetic. After the tooth is numb, a small protective sheet called a “dental dam”  is placed over the area to isolate the tooth and keep it clean and free of saliva during the procedure.
  2. An opening is made in the crown of the tooth. Very small instruments are used to clean the pulp from the pulp chamber and root canals and to shape the space for filling.
  3. After space is cleaned and shaped, the root canals are filled with a biocompatible material, usually a rubber-like material called gutta-percha. The gutta-percha is placed with an adhesive cement to ensure complete sealing of the root canals. In most cases, a temporary filling is placed to close the opening. The temporary filling will be removed by your dentist before the tooth is restored.
  4. Your dentist will then place a crown or other restoration placed on the tooth to protect and restore it to full function.

Preventing the Need for Root Canal Treatment

Although root canals are effective procedures to restore infected or damaged teeth, it is best to avoid the need for a root canal in the first place. Preventing the need for root canal treatment is simple, maintain a good oral hygiene routine. Since root canals are often necessary due to tooth decay, people can help prevent this by brushing twice and flossing once every day.

It is also essential to attend regular dental appointments and seek dental attention as soon as possible when pain or discomfort arises. People can also take certain actions to avoid tooth damage than can necessitate root canal treatment. This includes avoiding acidic foods and beverages, not chewing on ice, and wearing a mouthguard while playing sports and at night if teeth grinding occurs.

Root Canal Myths

Those unfamiliar with modern dentistry will be extremely concern with the idea of having a root canal. Fortunately, thanks to modern medicine the process around a root canal treatment has improved significantly. There are a variety of misconceptions related to root canal treatments. We would love to dispel some of these misconceptions and put your mind at ease as you are considering treatment options:

  • Myth 1: Root Canal Treatment is Painful – Fortunately, we have grown significantly over the years. Our approach to root canals has improved. The pain from sever toothaches is terrible and can negatively impact lives. With great anesthetics that are easily available in most modern dental clinics, many procedures of this nature are nearly painless.
  • Myth 2: It’s Better to Extract the Tooth than have a Root Canal – Saving a natural, real tooth is almost always the better option. There are circumstances this myth may be true but that is why you have to rely on the trusted opinion of a skilled dental care providers. Generally speaking, root canals and crown placement is a great option for maintaining good oral health.
  • Myth 3: Root Canals Remove the Roots of the Tooth – When a root canal treatment is performed, the pulp from inside of the tooth is removed. The roots of the tooth are not removed.

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About Us

Sandcreek Dental is a Family-Friendly Dentist Providing Personal Care since 1998 committed to providing quality dental care to families located in Idaho Falls, Ammon and the surrounding areas.


2460 E 25th St.
Idaho Falls, ID 83404

(208) 525-4780