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Root canals can save a badly damaged or infected tooth.

Root canal treatment (also know as endodontic therapy) is necessary when a cavity has been neglected long enough to affect the pulp of the tooth, requiring the canals which contain the nerve of the tooth to be cleaned out. A root canal may also be needed when a tooth has undergone an extensive restoration that affects the pulp of the tooth, or if the tooth experiences trauma that affects the root. When a root canal is deemed necessary but it is still neglected, it can lead to an abscess and the infection can travel into the surrounding bone and tissue.

Some symptoms that indicate that the root has been affected include sensitivity to hot/cold or both, sensitivity to sweetness, sensitivity to biting or pressure, or a bad taste in the mouth (a bad taste could also be indicative of other dental issues). Once the infection is resolved and the canals are filled, the recommended treatment to restore the tooth is usually a core build-up to add foundation to the tooth and crown.

Contact our SE Portland Dentist for more information on endodontics.


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