Do You Need a Root Canal?

Knowing when you are dealing with a dental problem that requires immediate attention is important for the health of your smile. Even seemingly minor issues can become serious if not properly treated. Read on to learn the symptoms that should have you turning to our West Allis, WI, dentist, Dr. Jeff Welnak, and why root canal therapy may be the answer to preserving the health of your smile.

What is the purpose of root canal therapy?

Root canal therapy involves the inner structure of the tooth, an area known as the dental pulp. Consisting of soft tissue, dental pulp lies within the dental chamber of the tooth below the hard enamel and dentin layers.

When the dental pulp becomes infected or inflamed, root canal therapy becomes necessary in order to remove it. Luckily, once the tooth has fully grown, the pulp is no longer important for the tooth and can be safely removed by your local dentist

What causes an infected or inflamed dental pulp?

The most common causes of a damaged dental pulp include,

  • Dental damage such as a crack or chip
  • Severe decay
  • A dental infection

What are the warning signs that I need a root canal?

Common signs and symptoms that you may need root canal treatment include:

  • Severe or persistent dental pain that gets worse when chewing or biting down
  • Sudden prolonged tooth sensitivity to hot or cold
  • Darkening of the tooth
  • Swelling and tenderness of the gums around the tooth
  • A pimple-like bump on the gums (known as an abscess)

While not all dental pain means that you will need root canal therapy, a toothache is a classic warning sign that something is wrong and should be treated immediately by our West Allis, WI, restorative dentist.

Furthermore, it’s important to know that sometimes a tooth that has an infected or inflamed dental pulp won’t cause any symptoms, so the only way to catch this problem early on is to make sure that you are visiting your dentist every six months for routine cleanings and checkups.

Concerned? Give us a call

Root River Dental in West Allis, WI, provides comprehensive dentistry to patients of all ages. Whether you are dealing with a toothache or you just need to schedule a routine cleaning, call our office today at (414) 545-2050 to book your next visit.