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Office Visit

On the day of your appointment, your tooth will be examined.  This will include testing and an x-ray to help decide the proper treatment.  We are happy to discuss recommended treatment and answer any questions before we begin.

Root canal procedure initially involves isolation of the tooth.  This helps to keep it clean and dry during treatment.  A small opening is made in the crown of the tooth to gain access to the pulp chamber of the tooth, much like filling a cavity.  The canal(s) will be cleaned and shaped before they are filled.  A biologically compatible material will be used to fill the canals.  A temporary filling will be placed in the access opening.

Follow up treatment includes contacting your dentist for a visit upon completion of your treatment.  A written report along with an x-ray will be sent to your dentist.  They will determine the type of restoration needed following the root canal.  If follow up is necessary with our office, you will be contacted by mail.

Before Endodontic Therapy

This procedure is performed using local anesthesia. Usually, there are no restrictions after the procedure concerning driving or returning to work.

Continue all medications for blood pressure, diabetes, thyroid problems and any other conditions as recommended by your physician. If you have a question, please call our office prior to your appointment.

If you have been advised by your physician or dentist to use antibiotic pre-medication because of mitral valve prolapse (MVP), congenital heart problems, heart murmur, hip, knee, cardiac or other prosthesis, or if you have rheumatic heart disease, please make sure you are on the appropriate antibiotic on the day of your appointment. If there is a question, please call our office prior to your appointment.

If you can take ibuprofen (Advil) or naproxen sodium (Aleve), it does help reduce inflammation when taken pre-operatively. We recommend 2 tablets of either medication 2-4 hours before endodontic therapy.
We prefer you eat breakfast or lunch before your appointment.  You will be numb following the visit and unable to eat.

After Endodontic Treatment

Endodontic treatment has now been completed. The root canal system has been permanently sealed. However, the outer surface is sealed with a temporary restoration only. If you do not already have a crown you will need to see your dentist for that restoration unless told differently either by the endodontist or your dentist.  Please telephone your restorative dentist for an appointment. A complete report and radiograph of treatment will be sent to your restorative dentist. 

Cleansing the root canal system may cause inflammation of the tissue surrounding the tooth.  You may experience some discomfort for a few days.  Sometimes it takes several days for symptoms to develop.  The tooth may throb or be sensitive to bite or touch.
Over the counter analgesics like Ibuprofen or Acetaminophen usually alleviate the discomfort.  If you are prescribed an antibiotic to help control infection, it should be started immediately and be taken until gone.  An ice pack placed outside of the cheek will also help alleviate symptoms.

Severe pain that keeps you awake at night or pain not alleviated by medication should be reported to our office.  You should also call us if you develop swelling or if prior swelling worsens.  Sometimes your gum will be red and swollen from the clamp that was used around the tooth during the procedure.  This is normal and will subside in a few days.

Avoid chewing or biting directly on the treated tooth until your general dentist replaces the temporary filling.  It is OK to brush and floss your teeth.  If the temporary filling is lost, call our office so we can arrange to replace the temporary.  You can check to see if the temporary filling is in place by looking into a mirror.


North Hills
(412) 366-6990
South Hills
(412) 561-3780
Fox Chapel
(412) 449-0132
Center Township
(724) 728-3377
Robinson Township
(412) 787-3704
(724) 749-4842
(724) 853-1500
Lower Burrell
(724) 335-2900
(412) 253-6022
(724) 602-9744