Have a Bad Toothache? It Might Need Root Canal Therapy

A toothache can be obvious, but its cause isn’t always as easily identifiable. It can occur from a problem with your tooth structure, such as damage or decay, or it can result from gum tissues receding and exposing your teeth roots. For many patients at our El Paso, TX, dental office, a toothache that grows more severe over time is caused by a growing infection within your tooth. If the toothache is severe, then the infection within your tooth probably is, as well, and root canal therapy may be the best way to successfully alleviate the discomfort.

Why your tooth hurts

The nerves that allow your tooth to feel are housed within a small chamber, or pulp, located at the center of your tooth. Along with the nerves, other soft tissues such as blood vessels travel from the pulp and through the tooth’s root canal to reach the jawbone. Surrounding the pulp is a dense, durable material known as dentin, which makes up the majority of your tooth’s crown and is protected by a layer of highly resilient enamel. This high level of protection means that your tooth’s nerves shouldn’t feel anything when you bite and chew. However, as enamel and dentin erode due to tooth decay, your tooth will become increasingly more sensitive.

What severe tooth pain means

Tooth sensitivity can indicate early stages of tooth decay, which involve the erosion of your tooth’s enamel and the infection of its dentin. This level of decay can often be addressed with the help of a tooth-colored filling, which is a procedure where we remove infected tooth tissue and fills the cavity in your tooth with tooth-colored composite resin. As the decay progresses and grows closer to the nerves in the pulp, the pain in your tooth will grow more and more intense. In cases of extreme tooth pain, the infection has likely reached and directly infected the tooth’s nerves and pulp tissues.

How root canal therapy can alleviate it

While a tooth filling is designed to restore the cavity in a tooth’s dentin, root canal therapy is designed to accomplish the same goal within your tooth’s inner chamber and root canal. After carefully accessing and cleaning the tooth’s interior, we’ll fill, seal, and restore the root canal and pulp using biocompatible material. Removing the infected nerves and tissues removes the source of your toothache, though it can leave the tooth structure vulnerable. For optimal results, we often complete root canal therapy by capping the tooth with a custom, highly lifelike dental crown.

Learn if root canal therapy can fix your toothache

When your toothache is severe, the tooth decay causing it likely is, as well. To address it, your tooth might need root canal therapy to remove the painful infection. For more information, schedule an appointment by calling the Sunny Smiles dental office nearest you in El Paso, TX, today! We also have offices in Chaparral, Canutillo, and Vinton so we can easily serve patients throughout all surrounding communities.