What is a Root Canal?

Teeth consist of two parts: the “crown” which is visible in your mouth and used in chewing; and the “root” which is typically not visible in your mouth and is anchored by surrounding bone and gum tissue.  Teeth toward the back of your mouth tend to have between one and four separate roots providing strength needed for chewing.  Inside a tooth are one or more channels that run the length of each root, collectively called the “root canal space”. Contained within the root canal space are nerves, blood vessels, and tissue (together, called the “pulp”). 


The pulp can be irreversibly injured or infected due to deep decay, fillings, trauma/accidents, Periodontal disease, or a fracture somewhere in the tooth. Symptoms of this condition may include sensitivity to hot, cold, or sweet food and drinks; pain when chewing; spontaneous, throbbing, or radiating pain; or swelling and abscess.

What is a Root Canal?

that the roots are not removed during root canal treatment.  They, along with the anchoring bone and tissues, are preserved and are essential to maintaining teeth in the mouth. 


At Alpha Canyon Endodontics, treatment begins with an diagnostic examination and radiographs (x-rays).  Once a diagnosis of infection or irreversible damage to the pulp is determined, the pulp is removed through an opening made in the tooth.  The root canal space is thoroughly cleaned, smoothed, and disinfected before a root filling is placed to seal the internal aspects of the tooth from contamination. 


Root canal treatment can usually be completed using local anesthesia in one or more visits, depending on the treatment required.  Adjunctive sedation options are available upon request, including Nitrous Oxide gas, and oral conscious sedation techniques. 


Occasionally, a tooth cannot be preserved because the root canals are inaccessible or mineralized, the root is fractured, the surrounding bone/gums are inadequate or unhealthy, or because the tooth cannot be restored.  In these situations, we will usually recommend extraction of the tooth.


Root canal treatment is one of the most common Dental procedures.  While there is no certainty concerning healing, successful results occur 90 -  94% of the time. It is of utmost importance that after root canal treatment, an appointment is made with the referring Dentist to adequately restore the tooth.  Although root canal treatment seals the tooth internally, the Dentist must provide the proper external seal (generally a crown) to prevent the recurrence of infection. 

To preserve a tooth with an injured or infected pulp, it is necessary to remove the diseased pulp tissue to prevent and rid the area of infection. This procedure is known as root canal treatment, or Endodontic Therapy.  The pulp is only necessary during childhood and adolescence when teeth are developing.  It is for this reason that we are able to remove the pulp and allow teeth to remain fully functional.  During root canal treatment, the pulp is removed internally creating a hollow space in the center of each root. It is important to know

Greenfield Medical-Dental Center

875 N. Greenfield Road, Suite #111

Gilbert, Arizona 85234

Dobson Village

255 S. Dobson Road, Suite #3

Chandler, Arizona 85224




     8:00am - 5:00pm


Saturday, Sunday





Dr. Nguyen





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