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Root Canal

An infected tooth can cause issues such as pain, sensitivity, and further health complications if left untreated.

A root canal is a dental procedure that removes the pulp and eliminates the infection to save the tooth structure.

Dr. Garrett Oka in Kailua-Kona, HI, can perform this dental treatment to protect your oral health and your quality of life

What Is a Root Canal?

Cracks and cavities damage a tooth and can allow bacteria to enter the tooth chamber, causing an infection of the pulp. A root canal is a dental procedure in which a dentist removes bacteria, decay, and infected tissue from a patient's tooth to preserve the tooth structure. This procedure can repair your smile and help prevent the need for expensive restorations.

During root canal treatment, your dentist will remove decay and damage to access the inner chamber of the tooth. The pulp and infected tissue from inside the tooth roots are removed to preserve the tooth structure. The tooth is then filled with gutta-percha to prevent bacteria from entering the tooth again. Once treatment is complete, the tooth structure is protected with a dental crown.

Preserve Your Smile With Root Canal Treatment Call Our Kailua-Kona Dental Practice Today

An infected tooth can be painful and lead to further infections and tooth loss if left untreated. While many patients believe root canals are painful, their purpose is to alleviate pain and prevent widespread damage to your teeth, gums, and body. The procedure is virtually painless, and it allows your dentist to help preserve the tooth structure, preventing you from needing expensive restorative dentistry such as an implant-supported crown.

Don't live your life in pain or risk your oral health. Call our Kailua-Kona dental practice or request a consultation to protect your smile.

(808) 329-0889

Our friendly dental team can restore your quality of life.

Five-Star Reviews  From Happy Sweet Tooth Dental Patients


Chris Green


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Extremely professional, very knowledgeable with a great bedside manner. Whether it's standard cleaning or more advanced procedures, Sweet Tooth is your place.

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Paul Knoll


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Excellent team of providers who are positive, safe, and caring. The ‘doc’ is cool. Laid back but professional. Comprehensive first-patient visit. Probably best dental experience ever for me.

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Why Not Just Extract an Infected Tooth?

Woman with tooth pain

Whenever possible, your dentist will try to preserve the structure of your tooth. When tooth loss occurs, the jawbone can deteriorate because it loses stimulation from the tooth roots. Root canals allow our dentist to remove the pulp from the tooth, eliminating the infection, while preserving the structure of the tooth. Only in severe cases will an extraction be recommended over root canal treatment.

Doesn't a Root Canal Hurt?

It's a common misconception that root canals cause intense pain. Though you can expect minor discomfort when you are injected with the local anesthetic, your dentist will do everything he can to ensure you are comfortable before he begins treatment. You may experience some discomfort in the days following your root canal treatment, but this can be managed with pain medication.

Root Canal Treatment Timeline

"By addressing the infection and decay with a root canal, your dentists can restore your oral health and preserve the tooth structure."
"By addressing the infection and decay with a root canal, your dentists can restore your oral health and preserve the tooth structure."

Initial Consultation

Dr. Oka will examine your teeth, identify which tooth or teeth are infected, and determine if root canal treatment is right for you. The goal of a root canal is to preserve the tooth structure, but in rare cases, the decay and infection may be too severe and require extraction.

Local Anesthesia

Your dentist will begin the root canal procedure by numbing the area using a local anesthetic. This will ensure that you feel minimal pain during your root canal.

Root Canal Treatment

Once you are properly numbed, your dentist will make a small opening in the infected tooth that will allow him to reach the pulp, the center of the tooth. Your dentist will remove the infected pulp and clean the pulp chamber. Once the tooth is cleaned and no bacteria remain, it is filled with gutta-percha.

Crown Restoration

A dental crown is used following a root canal to protect and provide support to the remaining tooth structure. This crown will be crafted to look like your natural teeth. Traditional crowns are often placed at a second appointment, but our Kailua-Kona dentistry practice also offers CEREC® crowns. If a CEREC crown is the right choice for you, your crown can be milled right in the office in as little as an hour.

Crown Placement

Once your crown is ready, our dentist will place it. He will make any necessary adjustments to ensure that the crown fits properly and is comfortable. It is then permanently bonded to the tooth with dental cement.

Shouldn't I See an Endodontist For a Root Canal?

Though endodontists specialize in problems that affect the tooth pulp, some dentists undergo training to be able to perform root canals. Dr. Garrett Oka has been practicing dentistry since 1999, so he can provide his patients with first-class treatment, including root canals; however, if he feels you have a significant problem that requires treatment from an endodontist, he can refer you to a trusted specialist.

An added benefit of seeing a dentist such as Dr. Oka over an endodontist is that he can provide you with comprehensive care in Kailua-Kona. Our dentist can address multiple oral health issues such as cavities, and he can perform a wide range of treatments such as extractions, fillings, implants, and teeth whitening. No need to familiarize yourself with multiple dentists or specialists!

Paying for Treatment

Dental Insurance

Root canals are often covered by dental insurance providers, and we accept most insurance plans. Our friendly staff in Kailua-Kona will work with you to file the necessary paperwork to reduce or eliminate your out-of-pocket costs.

Financing Options

For patients without insurance, we offer affordable financing through CareCredit®. We also accept most major credit cards and offer a 5% discount on cash payments made in full before the patient begins treatment.

See What More Happy Patients Have To Say...


Sam Brown


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Best Dentist office on the island. I have know Dr Oka and his staff many years. Always good at getting you in you have something that needs to be done right away!! Thanks Dr Oka!

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Antonio Valentin


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The staff, Melissa and Dr. Garret were great. Would definitely continue to come to their dental office in the future.

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Sweet Tooth Dental Garrett Oka, DDS

Dr. Garrett B.K. Oka and his team strive to provide patients with the highest level of service and top-quality dental care in order to build lifelong relationships. We want you to enjoy all the benefits of a stunning smile and optimal oral health. Our popular services include:

  • Dental Implants
  • Veneers
  • Dental Crowns
  • ClearCorrect®

To schedule an appointment, contact us online or call (808) 329-0889.

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