When you have an infection in your tooth, both your oral health and your overall health are at risk. The bacteria that get into your tooth irritate the pulp inside, causing it to become inflamed. This inflammation can lead to serious tooth pain. The infection can spill out of the root, causing an abscess. Bacteria may also find their way into your bloodstream, which can lead to serious health complications, such as heart disease and stroke. At National Dental Sunnyside, we can restore the health of your tooth with a root canal.


Infections in your teeth are the result of bacteria entering the inner layer (the dentin). This can occur in a variety of ways – chips, cracks, tooth decay, gum disease. Once the bacteria are inside, they turn the hollow canals of the dentin, which extend down to the root of the tooth, into their new hiding place. There, they begin to multiply and irritate the pulp, which houses nerves and blood vessels. The pulp becomes inflamed and can cause significant pain. The bacteria can eventually spill out of the root of the tooth, and an abscess will form. If the infection continues to go untreated, the abscess will grow, and it may rupture, allowing bacteria to enter your bloodstream. Once there, the bacteria can travel throughout your body, contributing to such issues as heart disease, stroke, and diabetes. A root canal is the only way to remove the infection and restore the health of your mouth.


There are several symptoms of an infection inside your tooth:

  • Severe tooth pain that is initiated by eating, but lingers after you are finished.
  • Sensitivity to temperature (along with spice, salt, acid) that lingers after the irritant is gone.
  • Facial swelling.
  • Bone loss in your jaw.
  • A dental abscess. This is the biggest indication of an infection.
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Before we can provide treatment, we first need to diagnose the infection in your tooth. This involves a thorough oral exam. We will first inspect the inside of your mouth, checking for damage and decay on your teeth, as well as swelling of the gums.

After our initial visual inspection, we will then take digital X-rays. The X-rays will allow us to see everything that is happening under your gum line. We can see the condition of your jawbone, see the damage, and spot dental abscesses. If we do find an infection, we will then plan your customized treatment plan.


A root canal is the best option for treating an infection in your tooth. At National Dental, root canals are performed using rotary endodontics. First, we administer a local anesthetic. If necessary, we can also provide you with sedation. Once the anesthetic has taken effect, we will drill a small hole into the top of your tooth. Small, specialized tools are used to remove the infected pulp. Next, we use an electric handpiece, which is equipped with a nickel-titanium tip, to shape and clean the canals of the tooth. Nickel-titanium is up to 5 times more flexible than the stainless-steel file that is traditionally used. This allows us to access curved canals with much less risk of damage. Because the handpiece is powered by electricity, it allows us to complete your procedure in less time. Once your canals have been shaped, the tooth is cleaned and disinfected. We then fill it and place a dental crown.

If you suspect an infection in your tooth, don’t delay. Call National Dental Sunnyside today at (718) 925-3365 to schedule your appointment.