Endodontics and Root Canal Treatment in Charleston, SC

What is a Root Canal and What are its Causes?

A root canal is a dental procedure that involves treating the inner part of a tooth, known as the pulp, when it becomes infected or damaged. The pulp contains nerves, blood vessels, and connective tissue, and when it becomes compromised, it can lead to severe pain and potential tooth loss if left untreated. Root canal treatment aims to save the tooth by removing the infected pulp, cleaning the area, and sealing it to prevent further infection.


Root Canal Treatment in Summerville SC

Root canals are not the scary procedures they are thought to be. Contact us at Ammons Dental by Design, so we can discuss the procedure with you, and arrange for an initial consultation.

Causes of Root Canal Problems Infographic

Causes of Root Canal Problems:

Several factors that can lead to the need for a root canal treatment. Here are some common causes:

Dental Decay

Tooth decay that progresses deep into the tooth can reach the pulp, causing infection and inflammation.

Trauma or Injury

Any traumatic event, such as a severe blow to the mouth, can damage the tooth's nerve and pulp, leading to the need for a root canal.

Cracked or Fractured Tooth

A crack or fracture in the tooth can allow bacteria to enter the pulp, leading to infection and necessitating a root canal.

Repeated Dental Procedures

Teeth that have undergone multiple dental procedures or extensive dental work may require a root canal due to the increased vulnerability of the pulp.

Some Statistics about Root Canal Treatment

Root canal treatment is a common procedure performed by dental professionals worldwide. Here are some noteworthy statistics:

  • More than 15 million root canals are performed every year, highlighting the prevalence and effectiveness of this dental procedure.
  • On average, more than 41,000 root canals are performed each day, demonstrating the significant demand for this essential dental treatment.
  • Periodontal disease, characterized by gum inflammation and infection, is a common cause of infection in the mouth. It affects nearly half of adults over the age of 30, emphasizing the importance of maintaining good oral hygiene practices.
  • Alarmingly, approximately 1 in 4 adults have untreated cavities, underscoring the need for early detection and timely dental intervention to prevent further complications such as root canal treatment.
Root Canal Treatment in Charleston SC

Who Needs a Root Canal?

A root canal may be necessary for individuals experiencing specific dental symptoms. Here are some common indications that suggest a person may require a root canal treatment:

Severe Toothache that doesn't go away with painkillers:

A persistent, throbbing toothache, especially one that does not subside even with over-the-counter pain medications, can be a sign that the inner pulp of the tooth is infected or inflamed. In such cases, a root canal may be needed to alleviate the pain and address the underlying issue.


Sensitivity to hot or cold foods and drinks:

If you experience heightened sensitivity or discomfort when consuming hot or cold foods and beverages, it could indicate an infection or damage to the tooth's pulp. This sensitivity is often a result of exposed nerve endings within the tooth and may necessitate a root canal to resolve the problem.


Swelling and tenderness in the gums around the affected tooth:

Inflammation, tenderness, and swelling in the gums surrounding a specific tooth can be an indication of an underlying infection or abscess. Root canal treatment may be required to eliminate the infection and prevent further complications.


Darkening or discoloration of the tooth:

A tooth that appears noticeably darker or discolored compared to the surrounding teeth may indicate that the tooth's pulp is diseased or dying. A root canal can be performed to address the internal issues causing the discoloration and restore the tooth's natural appearance.


Persistent bad breath or taste in the mouth:

Chronic bad breath or an unpleasant taste in the mouth, even after maintaining proper oral hygiene, can be a symptom of an infected tooth. This occurs when bacteria from the infected pulp release foul-smelling gasses or substances. Root canal treatment can help eliminate the infection and restore oral health.

Root Canal Treatment in Camden SC

Step-by-Step Guide to Root Canal Treatment in Charleston, SC

Root canal treatment is a meticulous dental procedure that involves several steps to effectively treat an infected or damaged tooth. Here is a step-by-step guide to the root canal treatment process:



To ensure your comfort throughout the procedure, a local anesthetic will be administered to numb the area around the affected tooth. This helps to eliminate any potential pain or discomfort during the treatment.


Dental dam placement:

A dental dam, a thin sheet of rubber or vinyl, is placed around the tooth being treated. It acts as a protective barrier, isolating the tooth from the rest of the oral cavity, preventing contamination and facilitating a clean and sterile environment for the procedure.


Access hole:

Using specialized dental instruments, the dentist creates a small access hole in the tooth. This access point allows for the removal of infected or damaged pulp from within the tooth.


Shaping the canals:

Once the access hole is created, the dentist uses files of increasing diameter to carefully shape and clean the root canals. This step involves removing the infected pulp, as well as any debris or bacteria, to ensure the canals are thoroughly cleaned and disinfected.


Filling the canals:

After the canals are cleaned and shaped, they are filled with a biocompatible material called gutta-percha. Gutta-percha is a rubber-like material that seals and fills the canals, preventing reinfection and providing stability to the tooth structure.


Sealing the tooth:

To further reinforce the tooth and prevent any potential leakage or reinfection, a dental adhesive is used to seal the access hole.


Placing the final restoration:

In most cases, a tooth that has undergone root canal treatment will require a final restoration, such as a dental crown. The dental crown provides strength, protection, and aesthetic improvement to the treated tooth.

Root Canal Treatment Post-Procedure Aftercare

After undergoing a root canal treatment, it is essential to follow proper aftercare instructions to ensure a smooth recovery and optimal healing. Here are some important guidelines to consider:


Avoid chewing sticky foods like gum, especially:

Sticky foods can dislodge or damage the restoration or temporary filling placed after the root canal procedure. It is advisable to avoid sticky candies, chewing gum, or any other foods that may adhere to the treated tooth.


Avoid biting hard foods and hard substances:

To protect the treated tooth and prevent potential damage, refrain from biting on hard foods like nuts, hard candies, and seeds. Additionally, avoid biting on hard substances such as ice, fingernails, or pencils, as they can cause fractures or dislodgement of the restoration.


Chew on the opposite side of your mouth, if possible:

During the initial healing period, it is recommended to chew on the opposite side of your mouth, away from the treated tooth. This helps minimize pressure and stress on the restored tooth, allowing it to heal properly.


Maintain good oral hygiene:

Continue to follow a thorough oral hygiene routine, including brushing your teeth twice a day with a soft-bristle toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste. Additionally, floss daily to remove plaque and food particles from between the teeth and around the restoration.


Attend follow-up appointments:

It is crucial to attend any scheduled follow-up appointments with your dentist. These visits allow the dentist to monitor your healing progress, assess the restoration, and address any concerns or issues that may arise.


Report any persistent pain or unusual symptoms:

While some mild discomfort or sensitivity is normal after a root canal procedure, persistent pain or any unusual symptoms should be reported to your dentist promptly. This includes severe pain, swelling, discharge, or the loosening of the restoration.

Why Choose Ammons Dental by Design for your Root Canal treatment in Charleston, SC

By following the post-procedure aftercare instructions provided, you can support the healing process and ensure the long-term success of your root canal treatment. 

If you have any questions or concerns regarding your recovery, Contact Us at Ammons Dental by Design. With a dedicated team of dentists and endodontists, we prioritize patient safety and utilize modern techniques to perform root canal treatments. 

Our experienced team follows strict sterilization protocols and employs the latest technologies to deliver safe and effective procedures. Serving patients in Charleston, SC, as well as in Camden, Summerville, and James Island, our goal is to preserve your natural teeth and provide exceptional endodontic care. 

Choosing a root canal treatment recommended by our dental professionals is a responsible and safe decision to address tooth infections and maintain optimal oral health.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is a root canal?
A: It is a dental procedure which becomes necessary when the root of a tooth becomes infected or inflamed.
Q: How much does a root canal cost?
A: In most cases, a root canal procedure will cost between $200 and $500, but it will be more if your insurance carrier does not cover any part of the cost.
Q: How long does a root canal take?
A: Most of the time, the procedure will take between 30 and 90 minutes, assuming no complications.
Q: Can you eat after a root canal?
A: You will have to wait until the numbness has worn off on your mouth, and you should avoid eating until the crown has been emplaced.
Q: Do root canals hurt?
A: In some cases, the pulp of the tooth is already dead and you won’t feel anything at all. If the tooth pulp is still living, you will need an anesthetic so that the procedure doesn’t cause you any pain.
Q: How long does it take to recover from a root canal procedure?
A: Usually it will take about a week for all the side effects to wear off after a root canal.

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Multiple Convenient Dental Locations Near Charleston

Ammons Dental By Design has four locations so you can find the most convenient office for your family.
1015 Fair St.
Camden, SC 29020

Monday – Thursday:
8am – 5pm

(803) 969-0365
F: (803) 432-2625
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Downtown Charleston
14 Lockwood Dr,
Charleston, SC 29401
(Suite A on the exterior of the Ashley House Building, across from the marina)

Monday – Thursday:
7am - 4pm

(843) 380-2734
F: (843) 577-4464
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James Island
1739-B Maybank Hwy.
Charleston, SC 29412

Tuesday – Friday:
7am - 4pm

(843) 380-8889
F: (843) 990-9504
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1710 Old Trolley RD., Ste. B
Summerville, SC 29485
*Rotating schedule
Tuesday – Thursday: 8am – 5pm
Monday & Friday*: 8am – 5pm
(843) 380-8904
F: (843) 871-0617
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West Ashley
1014 St Andrews Blvd Suite 210 B-1, Charleston, SC 29407

Monday – Thursday:
8am – 5pm

(843) 305-8403
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1015 Fair St.
Camden, SC 29020
Monday – Thursday:
8am – 5pm
P: (803) 969-0365
F: (803) 432-2625
about this locationsubmit a review
14 Lockwood Dr,
Charleston, SC 29401
(Suite A on the exterior of the Ashley House Building, across from the marina)
Monday – Thursday:
7am - 4pm
P: (843) 380-2734
F: (843) 577-4464
about this locationsubmit a review
1739-B Maybank Hwy.
Charleston, SC 29412
Tuesday – Friday:
7am - 4pm
P: (843) 380-8889
F: (843) 990-9504
about this locationsubmit a review
1710 Old Trolley., Ste.B
Summerville, SC 29485
Tuesday – Thursday: 8am – 5pm
Monday & Friday*: 8am – 5pm
*Rotating schedule
P: (843) 380-8904
F: (843) 871-0617
about this locationsubmit a review
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