What Happens in a Root Canal?

If your dentist in Houston, TX, has recommended a root canal, you may be wondering what happens next. You should allow sufficient time for a root canal appointment, as these often take longer than a simple dental exam. The booking receptionist will let you know how much time to expect. When the root canal is complete, you’ll be sent home with aftercare instructions, but in general, many patients who get a root canal are able to return to work and other activities. Here’s what to expect during the root canal treatment.

Dental Exam

The first step is a dental exam, including X-rays, to determine the extent of damage and the scope of work. Local anesthesia is administered to numb the tooth and surrounding area. If you request dental sedation, that will be administered, too.

Removal of Infected Pulp

The dentist will drill down from the crown to the pulp chamber. Files and other tools will be used to remove the infected pulp and to sculpt inside the tooth to prepare for the replacement pulp material. Any decayed nerve tissue will also be removed, which will resolve any pain the patient may have been experiencing.


The empty pulp chamber will be disinfected to kill any bacteria and to reduce the risk of further infection.

Filling of the Canals

Once the canals are cleaned and shaped, they are filled and sealed with a biocompatible material, usually a rubber-like material called gutta-percha. This step prevents bacteria from re-entering the root canals.

Restoration of the Tooth

After the root canal, the tooth is weak and needs to be restored to regain its full function. A filling is placed to close the opening on the tooth’s surface. You will have your choice of filling materials, including tooth-colored resin and other materials. In some cases, a crown is also placed over the tooth to protect it from breaking in the future and to restore its natural shape and appearance. You’ll be informed at the time which restoration options you are a candidate for.

There are many reasons why you may need a root canal in Houston, TX, including an infection in the pulp, tooth trauma, or a large crack in the tooth. To book your next dental exam, please contact us today.

Why a Root Canal Is Nothing to Fear

Did you know a root canal is actually a good thing? It’s a procedure your dental professional uses to save your natural teeth. This is always preferable to having a tooth extracted and then replaced. It’s less costly, too. When your endodontist performs a root canal, they alleviate the terrible pain that may be caused by toothache and gum abscess. Perhaps even better, this simple procedure can prevent your tooth from becoming infected a second time. Talk to your dentist in Houston, TX, if you have questions regarding your upcoming root canal.

What Happens During a Root Canal?

Before your root canal, your endodontist will numb your gums, so you don’t feel any pain. Once the anesthesia begins to work, they’ll drill down through the top of your tooth and remove the infected pulp. They’ll thoroughly clean and sanitize the pulp chamber and the tiny root canals that lead down into the gums. They may also apply an antibiotic to help kill any germs left behind.

Next, they’ll fill the root canals and the pulp chamber with a dental compound that effectively seals them off. Last, they’ll seal the hole they made in your tooth and cap it with a crown for added stability. At this point, all the infection will be gone, and you’ll be left with a strong, healthy tooth.

Is a Root Canal Painful?

A root canal is not painful because your gums are numb and because your endodontist will usually apply a topical numbing agent before injecting the local anesthesia. You may experience a bit of mild discomfort afterward, but over-the-counter pain medications are usually sufficient for easing any lingering ache after your root canal.

Root Canal Therapy in Houston, TX

If you’re worried about your upcoming root canal in Houston, TX, talk with your dentist. The friendly professionals at Restore Dental at Montrose are always happy to sit down with patients to address any concerns they may have regarding upcoming dental procedures. And root canals are one of our specialities. There really is nothing to fear and everything to gain by scheduling a root canal. Learn more today when you book an appointment with Restore Dental at Montrose.