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Root Canal Therapy

Root canal therapy is needed when the nerve of a tooth is affected by decay or infection.  In order to save the tooth, the pulp (the living tissue inside the tooth), nerves, bacteria, and any decay are removed and the resulting space is filled with special, medicated, dental materials, which restore the tooth to its full function.

Having a root canal done on a tooth is the treatment of choice to save a tooth that otherwise would die and have to be removed.  Many patients believe that removing a tooth that has problems is the solution, but what is not realized is that extracting (pulling) a tooth will ultimately be more costly and cause significant problems for adjacent teeth.

Root canal treatment is highly successful and usually lasts a lifetime, although on occasion, a tooth will have to be retreated due to new infections.

Signs and symptoms for possible root canal therapy:

  • An abscess (or pimple) on the gums.
  • Sensitivity to hot and cold.
  • Severe toothache pain.
  • Sometimes no symptoms are present.
  • Swelling and/or tenderness.

Reasons for root canal therapy:

  • Decay has reached the tooth pulp (the living tissue inside the tooth).
  • Infection or abscess have developed inside the tooth or at the root tip.
  • Injury or trauma to the tooth.

What does root canal therapy involve?

A root canal procedure requires one or more appointments and can be performed by a dentist or endodontist (a root canal specialist).

While the tooth is numb, a rubber dam (a sheet of rubber) will be placed around the tooth to keep it dry and free of saliva.  An access opening is made on top of the tooth and a series of root canal files are placed into the opening, one at a time, removing the pulp, nerve tissue, and bacteria.  If tooth decay is present, it will also be removed with special dental instruments.

Once the tooth is thoroughly cleaned, it will be sealed with either a permanent filling or, if additional appointments are needed, a temporary filling will be placed.

At the next appointment, usually a week later, the roots and the inside cavity of the tooth will be filled and sealed with special dental materials.  A filling will be placed to cover the opening on top of the tooth.  In addition, all teeth that have root canal treatment should have a crown (cap) placed.  This will protect the tooth and prevent it from breaking, and restore it to its full function.

After treatment, your tooth may still be sensitive, but this will subside as the inflammation diminishes and the tooth has healed.

You will be given care instructions after each appointment.  Good oral hygiene practices and regular dental visits will aid in the life of your root canal treatment.

Testimonials.

Read what people are saying about us.

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Testimonials

I never thought I would say I enjoy going to the dentist , but these two really elevate the practice of dentistry! I travel from the East Bay to attend my appointments and despite the morning traffic, I would never consider going anywhere else. Here are the things that, in my opinion, really make Dr. Ramirez and Dr. Karimi shine:
(1) They are very personable and easy to talk to - When I was looking for housing in the Bay Area, Dr. Karimi went out of her way to write down some areas for me to look. Who does that? Awesome dentists who care, that's who!

(2) They don't try to sell me services I don't need - I hate it when dentists try to sell you all sorts of fancy procedures/items you don't really need. These two would never do that!

(3) A focus on preventative care - Even though the money maker in dentistry is probably fixing bad teeth, both dentists emphasize preventative care. it's the first practice I've been to where their immediate response isn't to drill and fill!

(4) Email reminders before an appointment - I am really bad with the phone, so the email appointment reminders are a godsent!

Trina E.

Everyone in this office is FABULOUS!

My wife first heard about David and Katy through SFSPCA, and after the first appointment she couldn't stop raving about her visit! I was suspicious at first, since it's unusual to have a pleasant dentist visit. But then she went for a second visit, third visit, and the service and people were consistently excellent.

Finally I got very lucky and was able to schedule an appointment to experience this myself, and GOSH DR. RAMIREZ SERIOUSLY IS THE BEST DENTIST I'VE HAD! Super careful and professional, explained every step of the way and really funny to chat with lol

Sun, Joanne, Rita were all amazing and super helpful as well.

Thank you so much, everybody!!

Timmy Yelp H.

Dr. Ramirez and Dr. Karimi have been my dentists for almost a decade now and they are by far the best dentists I have ever had. Dr. Karimi is amazing and gives so much personal attention she makes you feel very at ease. They truly care about you and your health. Dr. Karimi has helped me over the years to have better dental hygiene and it shows in how much better my teeth have gotten the last decade. I panic about one day moving as I know I will never find a better dental office than here. They really are the best and would recommend them to anyone.

Jeff H.

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