You can also watch a video by the AAE that takes you through the process.
1. The endodontist examines and takes a radiograph of the tooth using x-rays, then administers local
anesthetic. After the tooth is numb, the endodontist places a small protective sheet called a “dental
dam” over the area to isolate the tooth and keep it clean and free of saliva during the procedure.
2. The endodontist makes an opening in the crown of the tooth. Very small instruments are used to clean
the pulp from the pulp chamber and root canals and to shape the space for filling.
3. After the space is cleaned and shaped, the endodontist fills the root canals with a biocompatible
material, usually a rubber-like material called gutta-percha. The gutta-percha is placed with an adhesive
cement to ensure complete sealing of the root canals. In most cases, a temporary filling is placed to close
the opening. The temporary filling will be removed by your dentist before the tooth is restored.
4. After the final visit with your endodontist, you must return to your dentist to have a crown or other
restoration placed on the tooth to protect and restore it to full function.
If the tooth lacks sufficient structure to hold the restoration in place, your dentist or endodontist may place a post inside the tooth. Ask your dentist or endodontist for more details about the specific restoration planned for your tooth.