Root Canal

What is a

Root Canal?

Root canal treatment is a relatively quick and comfortable endodontic procedure that helps alleviate pain and inflammation caused by bacteria that have infected the pulp inside your tooth. Infection typically occurs when your tooth enamel starts to erode and break down. This allows bad bacteria to travel through the tooth and down to the root which can result in tooth pain. During a root canal, the infected pulp is removed and the tooth is then cleaned, filled, and sealed to prevent further infection from developing.

Our team of quality Reno dentists has extensive experience performing root canal treatments that have saved patients from losing their teeth. Let us help you get your oral hygiene back on track. Worried you may need a root canal? Schedule an appointment with our office and we’ll get you taken care of.


Patients that require root canal treatment typically experience one or more of the following symptoms:

  • A chipped or cracked tooth – may be caused by injury, genetics, a deep cavity, or complications from a previous dental filling
  • Pain while biting or chewing
  • Bad breath or foul smells coming from the mouth
  • Gum boils
  • Sensitivity to hot or cold food/drink even once the sensation has been removed
  • Swollen or sore gums
  • Swelling around the face, neck, or mouth
  • Deep decay
  • Darkening of the gums

If you begin to notice any of the symptoms listed above, be sure to contact your dentist right away to prevent further damage from happening.


To understand why a root canal may be necessary, you first need to become familiar with the basic anatomy of your teeth. Underneath the hard enamel and dentin layers in your tooth is a soft tissue called pulp that helps nourish and protect the tooth during development. Pulp, which contains blood vessels, nerves, and connective tissue, stretches from the crown (top) of the tooth and extends to the very bottom of your tooth’s root. The pulp is extremely important for the healthy growth of your tooth, but once the tooth has matured it is then protected by the surrounding tissues no longer making the pulp essential.

When the enamel and dentin layers begin to break down and erode away, bacteria can seep into the tooth. If the bacteria reaches far enough down the tooth it can affect the pulp and root of your tooth leading to serious infection. Although root canals are common, they are easily avoided with proper dental care and regular visits with your Reno dentist.

Root Canal Treatment


Root canals are typically completed in 1 or 2 visits with your Reno dentist. First, your dental team will start by taking an X-Ray of your mouth to assess the extent of the damage and determine the best way to proceed with treatment. Your dentist will then apply a local anesthetic to prepare the area. A dental dam is placed in your mouth to keep the tooth clean and dry during the procedure and then your dentist will begin removing all decay from the tooth. Following this, your dentist will create a small opening near the crown to access the pulp chamber. Next, the infected pulp is removed from the area using standard dental instruments.

Once all the infected pulp is removed, the pulp chamber and root canals are flushed and cleaned in preparation for filling. In some cases, medication is applied to the area prior to filling and some may need to wait for the area to drain before filling can proceed. Once the area is ready to be filled, your dentist will use a sealer paste and rubber compound to fill the tooth, followed by a typical dental filling and protective sealant.


Lasting, Healthy Smiles

Root canal treatment comes across as a painful and intimidating procedure, but we can assure you there’s nothing to worry about. Thanks to modern techniques, root canals are very similar to a tooth filling. Root canal treatment at Reno Dental Associates is mostly painless and extremely effective. Connect with us today to schedule your root canal appointment.