Our Services / Root Canal

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More than 15 million Americans undergo root canal therapy every year. The quick, outpatient procedure can ease pain, prevent the spread of infection, and preserve your permanent teeth for years to come. At Plenty O’ Smiles, general dentist Narek Ovsepian, DDS, and the team use root canal therapy to preserve damaged or infected teeth. To make an appointment at the practice in Pacoima, California, call the office today or schedule online.

Root Canal Q & A

What is a root canal?

A root canal is an endodontic procedure that removes infected or inflamed pulp from the center of a permanent tooth. 

Pulp is a substance that contains nerves and blood vessels. It nourishes your teeth and provides temperature sensations like hot and cold but isn’t necessary for their long-term survival. 

By removing the pulp and replacing it with a synthetic material like gutta-percha, it’s possible to prevent an extraction and preserve your smile.

Why would I need a root canal?

Dr. Ovsepian and the team use root canal therapy to treat damaged or infected pulp. Pulp-related issues can occur due to:

  • Deep decay
  • Extensive dental work
  • Damage to the enamel, like chips and fractures
  • Oral trauma

Pulp-related oral health problems don’t always present obvious symptoms. If you experience swelling, increased tooth sensitivity, or a sensation of heat in your gums, contact Dr. Ovsepian right away.

What does root canal therapy involve?

At Plenty O’Smiles, root canal therapy takes two appointments about a week apart.

First visit

During your first visit, Dr. Ovsepian conducts an oral exam and takes X-rays to assess your tooth. If he determines you have a severe cavity or extensive pulp damage, Dr. Ovsepian administers a local anesthetic and carefully removes the pulp from the center of your tooth.

After removing the pulp, Dr. Ovsepian rinses your tooth and fills it with a material called gutta-percha. Then, he takes digital impressions of your tooth and applies a temporary crown.

Once you leave the office, Dr. Ovsepian sends your impressions to a dental laboratory that designs and manufactures a permanent crown.

Second visit

About a week later, when the lab finishes your permanent crown, you return to Plenty O’Smiles. Dr. Ovsepian administers a local anesthetic, removes your temporary crown, and replaces it with a permanent one. 

What is recovery like after a root canal?

After a root canal, you’ll experience some mild swelling, discomfort, and increased tooth sensitivity. To encourage your body’s natural healing process, Dr. Ovsepian and the team recommend:

  • Brushing and flossing gently
  • Using a desensitizing toothpaste
  • Eating only soft foods for 48 hours
  • Drinking plenty of floods
  • Taking over-the-counter pain medication

Your mouth should heal within a few days, but if your symptoms persist, don’t wait to contact Dr. Ovsepian.

If you think you might need a root canal, make an appointment at Plenty O’ Smiles by calling the office today or scheduling online.