What Causes the Need for a Root Canal?

What are the causes that would prompt your dentist to recommend a root canal? It’s one of the many questions of patients who fear this kind of treatment.

But root canal treatment is vital. It becomes critical if the soft tissue, which is called the pulp, in the root canal is infected or inflamed. Here are some reasons you might need this treatment option.


Tooth decay happens when bacteria thrive in your mouth producing acid. As a result, they eat away at your teeth. They cause deep decay if left untreated. They also lead to infection and extreme pain.

Decay may only affect the outer part of the teeth. That’s why you won’t notice the damage. Gradually, however, the decay will advance and affect deep layers of your tooth. Eventually, it would cause damage to the pulp, which contains nerves and blood vessels.

Dental Large Fillings

If left untreated, the cavity will cause extensive damage to the teeth. Your dentist may recommend large fillings. However, large fillings may affect your teeth’s structural integrity. They also increase your chances of undergoing a root canal treatment. Now, if the filling goes to the pulp, an infection may develop that prompts your dentist to recommend a root canal treatment.

Repeated Dental Procedures

They usually happen if you have recurring cavities. Your dentist will fill your tooth again. The process would involve removal of the current filling, treating the decay and filling it again. But tooth filling requires removing a portion of your tooth structure. And if this dental procedure is performed several times, it increases your risk of getting root canal treatment in the future because of the damaged structure.

Furthermore, any injury to your tooth may damage the pulp. Inflammation or infection of the pulp could cause pain or abscess if left untreated.

Although there are several reasons you need a root canal treatment, there are also reasons you need to save your natural tooth. In most cases, it’s the wise option. Endodontic treatment or root canal treatment maintains your natural smile. It helps you continue consuming the foods that you love. If you take care of the treated tooth properly, it could last a lifetime.

Some patients would consider tooth extraction as they don’t want to undergo the lengthy process of root canal treatment. However, tooth extraction means you’re removing your natural tooth. But you must keep in mind that nothing feels or looks like your natural tooth. That’s why dentists would always recommend the option that allows their patients to keep their natural teeth, even if the process is lengthy.

If you don’t want to experience the dilemma of whether to go for a root canal treatment or tooth extraction, you should practice excellent oral hygiene. It involves brushing your teeth at least twice a day or after every meal. Then, you must floss at least once a day and use anti-bacterial or fluoride mouthwash as recommended by your dentist. Every six months, you should undergo professional dental cleaning to remove plaque and tartar buildup that would lead to tooth decay if left untreated.

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