What happens to a tooth that makes a root canal necessary?

| April 13, 2009

hurt tooth

What Makes a Root Canal Necessary?
The following are the most common factors contributing to a need for root canal treatment:

  • Trauma, such as a physical blow to a tooth or the constant striking of a tooth in the opposite jaw that traumatizes the tooth
  • Physical irritation caused by a deep decay or a very large filling
  • Severe gum disease

If a cavity forms and is allowed to go untreated for too long, it can penetrate to the root pulp where an infection can occur causing the need for a root canal.

Regardless of the initial cause, the tooth pulp becomes irritated and infected. Bacteria grow within the tooth pulp, causing pressure and pain, sometimes accompanied by swelling of the face.

Sometimes the deterioration of the pulp happens so gradually that little pain is felt.

Either way, eventually the bacteria can destroy the pulp. As this happens, the bone surrounding the tooth may become in infected and abscessed, which may lead to the destruction of the bone surrounding the tooth which is painful and not a lot of fun.  The dentist is actually relieving you of the discomfort when they perform a root canal procedure.

A root canal gets rid of the infection and saves the tooth.

As you can see, there are several tooth deterioration steps that lead up to the need for a root canal.  By visiting us on a regular basis we can catch and fix a situation before it gets to the root canal stage and save you from discomfort and also save you money.