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Grace Dental Group

General Dentistry & Family Dentistry located in Fillmore District, San Francisco, CA

An infection of any kind is never good news, but when it occurs inside your tooth, the entire structure is in peril and requires endodontics, or a root canal procedure. At Grace Dental Group, Woo Young Lee, DDS, specializes in endodontics, helping his patients in the San Francisco, California, area preserve and protect their teeth. To learn more about endodontics, call the Fillmore District office or request an appointment using the online booking feature.

Endodontics Q & A

What are endodontics?

“Endo” comes from the Greek work “inside,” and “odont” is the Greek word for “tooth.” Together, endodontics describes the field of dentistry that protects the pulp on the inside of your tooth, which ultimately preserves your tooth.

At any given time, your mouth is full of bacteria, but when harmful bacteria gain access to the inside of your tooth through an opening, typically created by tooth decay or cracks in your teeth, they can wreak havoc in the soft tissue located in your root canal. Making matters worse, your root canal also houses nerves, which is why a root canal infection can be painful. And if left untreated, these types of infections can lead to abscesses inside your tooth, potentially compromising that tooth and leading to larger problems in your jawbone.

What are the signs of a root canal infection?

The most obvious sign that something may be wrong is pain in your tooth, which may also be accompanied by:

  • White spots on your gums
  • Swollen and tender gums
  • Extreme sensitivity to hot and cold

The pain can come and go, but usually flares when you apply direct pressure to the affected tooth when you eat.

What happens during a root canal procedure?

The goal of endodontics at Grace Dental Group is to relieve your pain and preserve your tooth. To do this, the dentists perform a root canal procedure on your infected tooth, which includes:

  • Gaining access to the inside of your tooth
  • Cleaning out the infected pulp
  • Removing the affected nerve
  • Disinfecting the inside of your tooth
  • Filling in your root canal with gutta-percha
  • Restoring your tooth

In many cases, the team at Grace Dental Group may place a crown over your treated tooth because your tooth may not be able to support a filling. They design your crown to fit in seamlessly with the rest of your teeth, and this protective cap works to prevent reinfection.

The dentists at Grace Dental Group typically perform a root canal procedure in one or two visits. Rest assured, during your first visit, they’re able to relieve your pain by removing the infected tissue and damaged nerve. A second visit is often necessary for your dentist to place the crown.

If you’d like to explore further how endodontics can preserve your teeth, call Grace Dental Group or use the online scheduler.