Dr. James S. Kim, DDS. SC

What happens during a root canal?

For most people, the mere thought of a root canal is a scary prospect. But the truth about root canals is that they are not painful because you are numbed for the entire procedure. In most cases, the toothache that brings you to the dentist—usually signaling the need for a root canal—is far more painful than the procedure itself.

The root canal procedure is quite simple. Once the area is entirely numb, Dr. Kim will drill a tiny hole in your tooth to remove the infected tooth pulp. Working through this hole, he will use a set of specialized tools to clean out any infection and bacteria to keep it from spreading to your healthy teeth.

Once the area is cleaned out, he will flush it out, and in most cases, he will also apply an antibiotic to keep the infection from recurring. The hole will then be filled using composite resin filling material.

Because the tooth structure that remains will likely be brittle, a crown is usually placed over it to strengthen and protect it. Once the procedure is finished, your tooth will be restored to its full functionality, and you will no longer be at risk of tooth loss.

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