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A root canal is a procedure that repairs and saves a damaged tooth rather than removing it. At The Hamptons Dentist, our dentist will remove the damaged or diseased pulp from the tooth, then clean and disinfect the pulp chamber and root canals before filling them with a rubber-like material called gutta-percha. The tooth is then covered with a dental crown or filling to protect it.

Symptoms You Need a Root Canal


Tooth Pain

The number one sign that you may need root canal therapy is tooth pain. You may experience tooth pain when biting down or chewing. Tooth pain is often a sign that there are problems with your tooth’s interior.

Tooth Discoloration

You may also experience tooth discoloration. Your tooth may become discolored over time. However, tooth discoloration can also be a sign that there is an infection in your tooth.

Sensitivity to Hot and Cold

Sensitivity to hot and cold is a common sign of a root canal infection. You may notice that eating or drinking hot or cold foods or beverages causes pain.

Swelling and Gum Pain

Swelling and gum pain are also common signs of a root canal infection. You may notice swelling, tenderness, and gum pain.

Bad Breath

You may also notice bad breath. Bad breath may be a sign that you have an infection in your tooth.


Cracks can also be a sign of a root canal infection. A crack in your tooth may be a sign that your tooth has become weakened and will need to be extracted.

Why Is a Root Canal Necessary?

Root canal therapy is necessary when the pulp, the soft tissue inside the root canal system, becomes inflamed and infected. This can be caused by deep decay, repeated dental procedures on the tooth, a crack or chip in the tooth, or trauma to the face.

The Procedure for Root Canal Treatment

A root canal treatment is performed when the nerve of a tooth becomes infected or inflamed. During a procedure, the nerve and pulp are removed, the inside of the tooth is cleaned and sealed, and the tooth is restored with a filling or dental crown.

Is the Root Canal Procedure Painful?

The root canal procedure is performed under local anesthetic, so patients will not feel any pain. Patients may feel comfortable enough to take a nap during the procedure.


What Should You Expect During and After a Root Canal?

Before your procedure, your dentist or endodontist will use a local anesthetic to numb the area and minimize the associated discomfort. If you are anxious, you can also ask for sedation.

During the procedure, your dentist will remove the infected tissue from the tooth. This part of the procedure usually requires the most time.

Following the procedure, your dentist will provide you with aftercare instructions. These may include rinsing with mouthwash to reduce pain and swelling. You may also have pain medication available. After the procedure, there may be some tenderness in the area of the treated tooth, but this should fade within a couple of days.

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