Getting To The Root Causes Of A Root Canal

Root canals, also known as endodontic therapy, are performed when the nerve or pulp of the tooth becomes infected and inflamed. The common causes affecting the pulp are a cracked tooth, a deep cavity, repeated dental treatment to the tooth or, trauma. Some patients experience prolonged sensitivity to hot food or liquids, and your gums may also feel tender and swollen near the problem area. If you are experiencing these symptoms, make an appointment with your dentist right away, infection that close to the brain is not a good thing.

The procedure involves removing the damaged area of the tooth (the pulp), cleaning and disinfecting it and then filling and sealing it. The term “root canal” comes from cleaning of the canals inside the tooth’s root.

Many patients dread the idea of a root canal, but is the treatment really necessary? In many cases, the answer is ‘yes’.

Saves the natural tooth: It is a common thing for people to consider getting their tooth out in case of decay. However, a root canal treatment prevents that from happening. It only removes the inflamed pulp from the inside of the tooth, cleans the root canal, and seals it back with a crown or a filling. By then, the treated tooth can resume its function just like the other teeth.


No need for extra expenses: Since a tooth extraction is irreversible, you cannot get back a lost tooth unless you plan to get prosthesis. Removable, or even fixed, prosthesis can be significantly costly, and can even be more expensive than having a root canal treatment. Getting this treatment instead of prosthesis can save you from making more expenses.


Restoring teeth function: Because of the discomfort caused by tooth decay, the patient may have difficulty chewing, biting, or do anything with his or her mouth. A treatment to the root canal can restore efficient chewing and biting sensation, as well as bring back the teeth’s natural appearance. It also protects the other normal functioning teeth from wear and tear due to excessive use.


Having a decayed tooth can be bothersome and can be a source of hindrance in one’s daily activities. The great news is that root canals are covered by most dental insurances and are an affordable solution to keeping your natural teeth. Remember to visit your dentist twice a year for regular exam and routine cleanings to further prevent a root canal. Keep in mind that even with the best care root canals are sometimes unavoidable, so contact Royal Dental at (713) 330-7700 and book an appointment with us today.

Not All Toothaches Are Tooth Related

When we have a pain in our teeth we automatically assume that the tooth is the source of the pain. Though this may be true in most cases, there are some instances where your tooth pain may actually be caused by something other than you teeth. This type of pain is called Referred pain. Referred pain is pain perceived at a location other than the site of the actual source of the pain. Below are two of the more common sources of referred pain than can result in achy or painful teeth.

Maxillary Sinusitis

Sinusitis is an inflammation of the sinuses, and is a common problem for many people, and is a chronic problem for about 15% for the population. There are 7 sinuses in the head, one of which is called the Maxillary sinus. The Maxillary is the most commonly infected sinus. One of the symptoms of maxillary sinusitis is pain that can mimic the pain of toothaches.

Additional signs and symptoms of Maxillary Sinusitis:

  • Nasal congestion
  • Tenderness of the sinuses
  • Headache
  • Bad breath
  • Nasal discharge
  • Fever

TMJ (Temporomandibular Joint Disorders)

TMJ is a disorder of the jaw joint and chewing muscles that can cause pain and discomfort in the jaw, face, or neck. It is estimated that over 10 million Americans are affected by TMJ issues. The condition also appears to be more common in women than men. TMJ can be caused by a number of things including a bad bite, trauma to the jaw, or grinding of the teeth, called Bruxism. Pain can sometimes be felt in the teeth as a form of referred pain due to TMJ disorders.

Additional Signs and symptoms of TMJ:

  • Jaw Pain
  • Discomfort when biting or chewing
  • Locking of the jaw
  • Clicking or popping sound when opening or closing the mouth
  • Earache
  • Headache
  • Difficulty opening or closing the mouth
  • Dull, aching pain in the face

Ruling Out Non-Dental Causes

When experiencing tooth pain it is important to first rule out any dental causes. You dentist can conduct an examination to detect any dental issues that may be causing the pain. If no dental cause is detected you dentist may be instrumental in helping you to potentially identifying what may be causing the referred pain.


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