Root canal treatment, also called endodontic treatment is a well established and widely used procedure to preserve ones natural tooth and restore it to function. It becomes necessary when the nerve inside the tooth is infected or inflamed, or when there is not enough tooth structure remaining to rebuild the tooth with a filling or crown.

Signs you may need A ROOT CANAL TREATMENT:

  • Considerable throbbing tooth pain
  • Prolonged Sensitivity to cold and especially hot - Drinking coffee may be excruciating!
  • Grey or Red Tooth Discoloration
  • Swelling or Tenderness in the nearby gum tissue

Sometimes there are no symptoms and an x-ray is needed to identify problem teeth.

Why do I need a ‘root canal’?

Root canal treatment can help you keep a tooth that otherwise would need to be extracted due to extensive decay, inflammation or infection inside the root, or breakage of the tooth.

Will it Hurt?

You should not experience any pain during the treatment.  A topical numbing gel will be rubbed on the gum tissue before you receive an injection. This will first cause tingling of the area around the tooth and after 10-15 minutes will make the tooth numb. 


Root canal treatment carefully cleans out the inside of a tooth. This eliminates bacteria and inflamed tissue, which can cause pain. After the cleaning process, the disinfected space is filled with a rubber like material, which prevents bacteria from inhabiting the space and causing more infections.  The entire process is done under a microscope, using state of the art instruments.  If there is extensive loss of tooth structure cause by decay or fracture, a post (metal or reinforced composite) can be anchored in the root to provide enough support for a crown (a cap which looks like your original tooth).

Operating Microscope used in providing advanced endodontic care to our patients.

Operating Microscope used in providing advanced endodontic care to our patients.

What happens after a root canal?

The tooth will be closed with a temporary filling or a crown (tooth colored composite cap).  You will then need to schedule an appointment to have a permanent crown placed or to have the temporary filling replaced by a tooth colored filling. The type of treatment will depend on the tooth and the remaining tooth structure.

How much does it cost?

The cost will depend on whether it is a front tooth with a single root or a tooth further back in your mouth which usually has two or three roots.  Most dental insurances cover a significant part of the cost.

How long does it take?

The amount of time it takes to complete root canal treatment will depend mostly on the number of roots and can often be finished in approximately 90min.  Sometimes two visits are necessary to disinfect the inside of the tooth thoroughly, or to treat teeth with very narrow canals in the roots.


The dental staff of Lewis Wharf Dental will be happy to discuss this procedure with you and answer your questions. Please feel free to contact our dentists offices for your private consultation.

About US

  • Always a Gentle Approach
  • Years of Experience
  • Modern, Waterfront Office
  • Friendly and Patient Staff
  • Microscope Assisted Treatment

In Network with:

  • Delta Dental
  • Blue Cross
  • Blue Shield
  • Altus Dental
  • Cigna

Anne L. Wucherpfennig, DMD, PhD

ENDODONTIST (Root Canal Therapy Specialist)

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  • DMD from Harvard University
  • Endodontic Residency at Tufts University
  • PhD in Anatomy from Friedrich Alexander University - Magna Cum Laude
  • Certified Endodontic Specialist since 1999
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