An endodontist essentially protects and restores your teeth. Dr. Habas will remove any inflamed or infected pulp, then carefully clean and shape the inside of the oral canal (a channel inside the root of the tooth). After Dr. Habas fills and seals the space, your general dentist will place a crown or other restoration on the tooth, strengthening it and bringing it back to full function.
After an examination and an x-ray of the tooth, Dr. Habas administers a local anesthetic to numb the tooth for the procedure. Then he puts a "dental dam," or a small protective sheet, in place on the tooth to isolate it, keeping it clean and free of saliva during the procedure.
Dr. Habas makes an opening in the crown of the tooth in order to clean the pulp from the pulp chamber and the root canal. By using a dental microscope and very small instruments, he shapes the space in the canal so he can fill it.
This step involves filling the root canal with a material compatible with the inside of the mouth, most often a rubber-like material called "gutta-percha." After cleaning and shaping the area, Dr. Habas places the gutta-percha with an adhesive to completely seal off the root canal. Often, he will put a temporary filling in place to close the opening until your general dentist restores the tooth.
After your final visit with Dr. Habas, your general dentist will restore your tooth to protect it and bring it back to full function. We advise that you make an appointment with your general dentist as soon as possible after your procedure to prevent possible tooth fractures or decay.
A common misconception about endodontic treatment, especially root canals, is that they are painful procedures. This idea stems from years ago when dental procedures were painful due to lack of anesthesia and ineffective instruments. Now, with advanced technology like Dr. Habas' Cone Beam CT scanner and dental microscope, as well as local anesthetic, a root canal is no more painful than getting a filling placed.