Root Canal

Michelle de la Vega, DDS -  - Family Dentistry

Genesis Dentistry Dental Group

Michelle de la Vega, DDS

Family Dentistry & Cosmetic Dentistry located in Santa Clara, CA

Root canal procedures don’t have the best reputation among dental patients, but they could ultimately save your life. At Genesis Dentistry Dental Group in Santa Clara, California, Michelle de la Vega, DDS, offers root canal treatments to preserve your natural tooth. If you have symptoms of a tooth infection and need a root canal, call Genesis Dentistry Dental Group as soon as possible or book an appointment online today.

Root Canal Q & A

What is a root canal?

A root canal is a dental procedure that can ultimately save your whole tooth. During a root canal procedure, Dr. de la Vega removes bacteria and infected tissue from an area of your tooth called the root canal. The root canal is the area full of nerves and tissue, called pulp, that reaches down through your tooth to the bottom of its root. 

If left untreated, an infected root canal can cost you your tooth. If you don’t get a root canal or extract the entire tooth, the infection could spread to other bones and organs, and even be fatal. 

How do I know if I need a root canal?

Thankfully, there are plenty of signs that urge you to get a root canal before the consequences become serious. You might need a root canal if a tooth gets cracked to its core, has an impact injury that doesn’t break it, or has a deep cavity. 

These symptoms may indicate your need for a root canal procedure:

  • Sensitivity to heat, cold, or touch
  • Sharp pain upon biting down
  • Visible chips or cracks
  • Tiny red bumps on your gums
  • Swollen gums
  • Dark-colored gums
  • Dark-colored tooth

If you notice any of these symptoms, especially if they get worse, it’s important for you to see Dr. de la Vega as soon as you can for an evaluation. If she discovers the signs during your teeth cleaning appointment, you’ll need to book a separate appointment for the procedure.

What can I expect during a root canal procedure?

Root canals have a reputation for being agonizingly painful. Before the procedure begins, Dr. de la Vega injects local anesthesia to make sure this isn’t the case. She takes an X-ray to see the inside of your tooth and the nearby bones. Then, she lays latex over the tooth to keep it clean and dry.

To perform the root canal, Dr. de la Vega drills a small hole in the top surface of your tooth. She then removes the nerve and infected tissue from the root canal area and thoroughly cleans the empty inner part of your tooth. 

Finally, Dr. de la Vega fills the canal with a rubber sealing material to make sure that it doesn't get infected again. She places a filling on the top surface of your tooth to protect it and might recommend a crown to hold its structure.

If you notice symptoms of an infected tooth, book an appointment at Genesis Dentistry Dental Group by phone or online to find out if you need a root canal.