Saving Infected Teeth with Root Canal Therapy in Bethesda

Endodontics refers to the dental care procedures that treat problems with the tooth root and the nerve tissue that runs through that tooth root, otherwise known as the pulp. Dr. Hornstein provides endodontic treatments, including root canal therapy and endodontic retreatment, at his Bethesda dental office. When an infection threatens the health of your tooth, endodontic attention can stand between you and eventual tooth loss.

Infected Tooth Pulp

When tooth decay eats through to the center of a tooth, the pulp is exposed and will develop an infection. The pulp, which contains blood vessels, lymph tissue, and nerves that are essential during a tooth’s development, cannot heal itself from an infection like other body tissues. To save the tooth and preserve its function, the infection, along with the pulp, must be removed. The pulp resides in the pulp chamber, located in the center of the tooth crown, and the root canals, which are the channels inside the tooth roots. When infection occurs, root canal therapy is used to clean out infected pulp, detoxify the canal, and then fill the damaged parts of the tooth. It is important to note that after tooth development in childhood, the only purpose of the pulp is to send pain signals to the brain. Your teeth can still function just fine without pulp; they simply cannot feel sensation after a root canal treatment.

Root Canal Therapy

To perform a root canal treatment, your Bethesda dentist will gain access to the tooth’s pulp chamber by creating an opening in the tooth crown. He will then clean out the infection, pulp, and any debris present within the pulp chamber and root canals. After shaping the canals and pulp chamber with files, he will sterilize the area. Next, he will seal off the root canals with a rubber-like material called gutta percha, which he will top off with a filling to protect the tooth from further infection. If necessary, Dr. Hornstein will place a crown on the tooth at a later date to strengthen and fortify it.

Root Canal Retreatment

If you’ve already had root canal therapy but experience a resurgence of symptoms, an endodontic retreatment may be needed. This is essentially a second root canal treatment, with special attention paid to places that might’ve been missed the first time around, which can include the root tip, or apex. If you’ve received root canal therapy in the past from another dental office and are experiencing problems, let us know. Dr. Hornstein is highly skilled in providing endodontic care to patients who need extra attention.

Experience the Difference

Dentistry of Bethesda provides compassionate, personalized dental care for all members of your family, including those with special needs. Contact Bethesda dentist Dr. Spencer Hornstein today at (301) 530-2700 to schedule your consultation. We happily treat patients from Silver Spring, North Bethesda, Rockville, Chevy Chase, Potomac, and the surrounding areas.