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Root Canals

Are you experiencing tooth sensitivity, pain, or discoloration? It might be time for a root canal. This painless procedure can restore function and save your tooth so you can avoid an extraction.

What Is a Root Canal? 

A root canal is a safe and effective dental procedure for repairing a severely infected tooth. It also prevents infection from spreading, allowing you to avoid additional dental work.   

Inside every tooth is pulp, a soft tissue that contains nerves, blood vessels, and regenerative cells. Pulp has many jobs, but essentially, it brings nutrients and blood to our teeth. Accidents, injuries, and poor oral hygiene can cause cracks and cavities that expose pulp to infection.  

Your root canal dentist begins by injecting anesthesia to numb the damaged tooth and surrounding gum. Once the area is numb, they drill a small hole into the tooth to access the nerve and pulp. Next, the dentist removes the nerve, pulp, bacteria, and other debris through this hole, and may administer medication to treat any infection present.  

Finally, the hole is filled and sealed to preserve the tooth. Your root canal specialist may place a dental crown over the treated tooth to further protect it and restore your bite. The need for a crown typically depends on the tooth’s location. For example, back teeth require more chewing, so they will benefit from the added strength a crown provides.  

Common Signs You May Need a Root Canal 

There are many clues that a root canal is needed. Some are immediately apparent, like after a fall or other accident that fractures a tooth. Other symptoms develop gradually and worsen to become more noticeable over time. Left untreated, an infected tooth can become debilitating.   

You might need a root canal if you have:  

  • A chipped or cracked tooth 
  • Lingering sensitivity to hot and cold  
  • Tender or swollen gums  
  • Severe pain, especially when biting or chewing 
  • Obvious decay or darkening of the gums  
  • Pimple-like sores on the gums  


Thrive Dental & Orthodontics family dentists use X-rays, cavity tests, and a thorough dental examination to assess if the tooth pulp is inflamed, infected, or dead.   

Emergency Root Canal 

A broken or loose tooth, infections in the mouth, and severe pain or bleeding can indicate a dental emergency. Thrive Dental attempts to see patients needing emergency dental care as soon as possible. When in doubt, contact our office. By contacting our experienced emergency dentists, we can work quickly to prevent infection and possibly avoid permanent tooth loss—while alleviating your pain.  

Does a Root Canal Hurt?  

No. Sure, there are plenty of jokes about root canals. But they are not nearly as unpleasant as their reputation suggests. In fact, they are not that unpleasant at all. Thrive Dental & Orthodontics provides comfortable, pain-free root canals and other treatments to repair and restore teeth and smiles.  

We offer different types of sedation dentistry, so if you don’t typically respond well to local anesthesia or are anxious about your procedure, let us know. We can explore various options to ensure a safe and comfortable experience.  

While you may have minor sensitivity following your root canal, after that subsides, you’ll probably be pleasantly surprised how much better your mouth feels once your tooth is repaired.   

How Long Does a Root Canal Last 

That depends. According to the latest research, the average tooth survives around 11 years after a root canal.  Different factors affect the health and longevity of a repaired tooth. Teeth that do not receive restorative dental treatment will not last as long. Teeth that receive a filling and crown immediately after a root canal can last up to 20 years.  

Good oral hygiene will help you avoid new disease and decay as well. If a new infection does occur, additional treatment may be possible to save the tooth. Regular check-ups are the best way to stay ahead of dental problems.  

Choosing a Dentist For Your Root Canal 

According to the American Association of Endodontists, more than 15 million teeth are treated and saved with root canal therapy. And while a root canal is a standard dental procedure, your experience should be anything but. Family dentists at Thrive Dental & Orthodontics elevate the typical dental visit by creating a comfortable and inviting space where patients can relax during treatment.  

Whether you are listening to your favorite tunes with our headphones or watching the latest Netflix series, dental care is self-care, and we provide that at Thrive Dental. When you choose our team, you can expect your root canal specialist to take the time to explain the process and address any questions or concerns you may have about the procedure and your overall dental health.  

Call, message us, or book your appointment online today. Thrive Dental offices are located in Frisco, Allen, Sachse, Richardson, and Dallas, Texas.   

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