When Root Canal Therapy Is Necessary?

Sometimes, thing can happen to our teeth even if we’re more careful with our oral hygiene routine. Maybe we accidentally cracked a tooth while playing a sport or chewing on something harder. Minor hiccups like this can lead to an infection or inflammation in the pulp of our teeth which is when root canal therapy may be necessary. Of course, other, more major issues can lead to the same problem, such as deep decay. However, don’t be alarmed if you end up needing root canal therapy as it can be caused by a few issues, even issues not stemming from poor hygiene practices.

What is the Pulp of a Tooth?

Deep in the middle of a tooth, there is a softer area that contains connective tissues, blood vessels, etc. The pulp acts as a nutrient provider to the tooth as well as regulates the pressure, pain, etc. a tooth might feel or experience. When infection or inflammation reach this portion of the teeth, that means it’s gone pretty deep. This results in making a tooth very sensitive. The only way to fix the issue that has gotten so deep is to remove the pulp of the tooth.

What is a Root Canal?

The root canal is the procedure of removing the infected or inflamed portion of the tooth, the pulp. Once a tooth has matured or fully grown in, it can survive without the pulp. For this reason, if the infection or inflammation results in a root canal where the pulp needs to be removed, this is a much better option than losing the entire tooth altogether.

When is Root Canal Therapy Necessary?

Unfortunately, if a crack, chip, or break in the tooth has been left long enough, it can cause decay, inflammation, or infection. These issues, if left long enough, can penetrate the tooth into its deeper layers, including the pulp. In order to stop the spread and sensitivity, the pulp has to be removed. Of course, infection and inflammation can also occur from gum disease that has been left untreated for too long along with, deep decay, etc.

A root canal, or root canal therapy, actually saves the tooth. This procedure does not kill the tooth when the pulp is removed. However, it saves the tooth by removing a portion of the tooth that is no longer needed while also removing the harmful infection at the same time. This will stop the issues occurring from getting any further and allows the tooth to resume normal use without any further problems.

If you’re experiencing pain, sensitivity, or other issues along these lines, it’s imperative that you speak to a dental professional right away. Even basic chips in your teeth can seem like no big deal but lead to worse issues if left untreated.


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Dr. Nguyen
Dr. Nguyen

Dr. Nguyen is committed to providing high-quality dentistry using state-of-the-art equipment to help you achieve improved oral health and the beautiful smile you deserve.

Dr. Nguyen has served on the Virginia Board of Dentistry and has many achievements such as: Invisalign Premier and Teen Provider, Pre-Fellow with Academy of General Dentistry, Graduate of Aesthetic Continuum, Engel Institute for Dental Implant Training, WaveOne Endodontic Training, HD President’s Club.

Dr. Nguyen enjoys spending time with his wife and three daughters, staying active in the gym, and trying out new restaurants.  When he isn’t at work, you can find him playing basketball, tennis, football, or hiking.

“I want to make you feel right at home, exceed your expectations, and provide an amazing experience!”