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Root Canals

root canals

Dental Health and Root Canals

In the past, if you had a tooth with a diseased nerve, you would probably lose that tooth. Today, with a special dental procedure called root canal treatment, your tooth can be saved. Root canals are a relatively simple procedure involving one to three office visits. Best of all, having a root canal when necessary can save your tooth and your smile!

What is the purpose of a root canal?

A tooth's nerve is not vitally important to a tooth's health and function after the tooth has emerged through the gums. Its only function is sensory – to provide the sensation of hot or cold. The presence or absence of a nerve will not affect the day-to-day functioning of the tooth.

When a tooth is cracked or has a deep cavity, bacteria can enter the pulp tissue and germs can cause an infection inside the tooth. If left untreated, an abscess may form. If the infected tissue is not removed, pain and swelling can result. This can not only injure your jawbones, but it is detrimental to your overall health. Without the proper treatment, your tooth may have to be removed.

What are the signs that a root canal is needed?

Teeth that require root canal therapy are not always painful. However, signs you may need a root canal include severe toothache, pain upon chewing or application of pressure, prolonged sensitivity or pain in response to hot and cold temperatures, a dark discoloration of the tooth, and swelling and tenderness in the nearby gums. If you experience any of these symptoms, contact your doctor.

What happens during a root canal?

Root canal treatment involves one to three visits. During treatment, your general dentist or endodontist (a dentist who specializes in problems with the nerves of the teeth) removes the affected tissue. Next, the interior of the tooth will be cleaned and sealed. Finally, the tooth is filled with a dental composite. If your tooth had extensive decay, your doctor may suggest placing a crown to strengthen and protect the tooth from breakage. As long as you continue to care for your teeth and gums with regular brushing, flossing, and checkups, your restored tooth can last a lifetime.



Dr. Jeffrey Yui

Endodontist Root Canal Specialist

Dr. Jeffrey Yui is our endodontist who specializes in root canals. Endodontics allows Dr. Yui the opportunity to improve his patients’ quality of life by restoring an infected tooth to ideal health and function. Dr. Yui’s gentle touch and attention to detail allows even the most complicated endodontic procedure to be done quickly, effectively, and with very little discomfort. In fact, he loves seeing his patients pleasantly surprised when they expect a root canal to hurt, and the opposite ends up to be true!

  • Doctorate of Dental Surgery - University of the Pacific Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry, San Francisco, CA
  • Advanced Education in General Dentistry Residency - Lutheran Medical Center, Oakland, CA
  • Endodontics -Temple University, Philadelphia, PA

Patient Testimonials

Dr. Yui was patient and explained my plan of care very well. I did not feel rushed at all. He was empathetic to my concerns as well. Thanks so much.
Allen S., July 2017

Staff was great and Dr. Yui explained the process throughout the procedure which helped me understand what was being done.
Bernadita A., August 2017