Root Canal Therapy

Root Canal Therapy in Manhattan, NY

When a tooth decays to the point that the pulp becomes infected, root canal therapy is performed to ease the pain, prevent the further spread of the bacteria that caused the infection, and save the tooth. Tooth pain is a common symptom of infected tooth pulp, followed by tooth sensitivity, discoloration, and gum swelling. Madison Dentistry offers a full range of general and cosmetic dental procedures to our patients in Manhattan, New York, including root canal therapy, tooth extraction oral surgery, cleanings, fillings, and cosmetic treatments. We will check your medical history and current medications to ensure your health and treatment safety. If you are very nervous, an oral sedative or anti-anxiety medication may be helpful and discuss the options.

Whatever your treatment, you can be sure that our dentists will use skill and compassion to make your dental experience as pleasant and effective as possible. Schedule an appointment with Madison Dentistry today!

Root Canal Therapy

Endodontic treatments are commonly referred to as root canal therapy.

Left untreated, the damaged pulp can cause infection that will damage the bone around the tooth and cause swelling and pain. If the damaged tooth becomes infected this may be one of the only options to save it..

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it is important that you contact our office right away. An x-ray will reveal the extent of decay and damage to the pulp and will help our dentists devise a course of action to save the tooth. The sooner root canal therapy can be performed; the more likely it is that we will be able to save the tooth.

Causes for Root Canal Therapy

Infection in your tooth from the following:

  • New trauma
  • Deep decay
  • Loose, cracked or broken filling

Root Canal Procedure

During the root canal procedure, at our Manhattan, New York office, the dentist removes the infected pulp from inside the tooth. They then fill and seal the canal with a rubbery material called gutta percha. Depending on the extent of decay on the crown of the tooth, the dentist will either fill it with traditional filling material, or place a crown on the tooth to reinforce its structure and protect it from further decay and fracture. Endodontic treatment involves opening the tooth, removing the damaged pulp, cleaning, shaping, filling and sealing the tooth. Depending upon how much infection there is in the injured tooth, your may be put on medicine before hand.

Broken Down, Step by Step Guide

Step 1

Local anesthesia is administered via injections to numb the tooth to be treated and the surrounding tissues.

Step 2

A dental dam — a thin sheet of rubber or vinyl — will be placed over the affected and adjacent teeth.

Step 3

A small access hole is drilled through the biting surface of an affected back tooth or from behind a front tooth, clearing a path to the pulp chamber and root canals for treatment.

Step 4

The diseased and dead pulp tissue is removed from the tooth with specially designed instruments used to clean out the root canals and pulp chamber.

Step 5

The canals are disinfected with antiseptic and antibacterial solutions.

Step 6

The canals are then shaped with tiny flexible instruments to allow them to receive root canal fillings and sealers. The canals are washed and cleaned again to remove root canal debris prior to sealing them.

Step 7

Root canal fillings are selected that will exactly fit into the freshly prepared canals.

Step 8

A temporary or permanent filling material will then be placed to seal the access hole that was made to treat the canals, and the dental dam is removed.

Step 9

After the procedure, an antibiotic may be prescribed to treat or prevent infection.

Step 10

Your tooth will need a permanent restoration — a filling or a crown — to replace lost tooth structure, and provide a complete seal to the top of the tooth.


Tooth extraction becomes necessary when a tooth is affected by extensive damage or advanced levels of decay. The tooth must be removed from your mouth before it leads to further pain and infection. A tooth is extracted when no other option, such as root canal therapy, can save the tooth. Our dentists may utilize sedation dentistry at our Manhattan, New York practice to make the tooth extraction procedure easy and painless for the patient.

If it becomes necessary to extract a tooth from your mouth, there are many options that can be used to replace it, including a dental implant or a bridge. Replacing an extracted tooth is important to maintaining proper alignment and aesthetics, preventing bone loss in the jaw, and preventing gum disease.

Instructions after Root Canal Therapy

What to expect:

It is not uncommon for a tooth to be uncomfortable or even exhibit a dull ache immediately after root canal therapy. This should subside within a few days (or even weeks).

Your tooth will be sensitive to biting, touching or tapping. This feeling is a result of the sensitivity of nerve endings in the tissue just outside the end of the root where we cleaned. If a temporary filling was placed in the tooth expect that it will wear down. It may feel concave or like a “divot”. That is normal.
What to do:

Avoid chewing on the treated tooth as much as possible. Over-the-counter analgesics such as Advil (adults can take up to 4 tablets every 6 hours if needed) or Aleve (2 every 6 hours if needed), or the equivalent, are the most effective pain medications. Tylenol can be taken as an alternative if you are unable to tolerate Advil or Aleve.

You should be scheduled within a month after completion of your treatment so that a permanent restoration can be made.

Whether you need a filling, a tooth extraction, or root canal therapy, Madison Dentistry of New York, can help restore your smile and improve your oral health. Contact our office to make an appointment.