How Root Canal Therapy Works

How Root Canal Therapy WorksIf you’ve never had root canal therapy performed before, you may not be familiar with the treatment. Most people only know root canal therapy as a sign that something has gone wrong. They’re right, in a sense. Root canal therapy is used to treat teeth that have suffered from severe decay. However, it’s important to understand that root canal therapy is a treatment used to save a tooth from extraction. While you’d ideally be able to avoid this treatment with preventive care, if your dentist is recommending it, you should follow up right away. Here’s how root canal therapy works.

Tooth Decay Spreads Deep Inside Your Teeth

Root canal therapy is used to address infections that have spread so deep inside your tooth or teeth that they cannot be repaired with a dental filling. When a cavity forms on the surface of your tooth, the cavity can often be cleaned and filled with dental resin. If the cavity isn’t repaired in time, the infection will work its way beneath the enamel and into the dentin and pulp of the tooth. From here, the bacteria can spread to your root canals, the passageways through which blood vessels, nutrients, and nerve endings move to and from your teeth.

Root Canal Therapy Works By Removing Bacteria

Your dentist will use root canal therapy to carefully access this inner portion of your tooth and remove the bacteria. After thoroughly extracting the bacteria and any infected tissue from the tooth, your dentist can then fill the damaged area to re-enforce your tooth and protect it from future infection. This type of treatment can preserve your natural root structure. After treatment, your dentist will place a dental crown on top of the salvaged tooth to restore your smile and give you a comfortable chewing surface.

Untreated Infections Lead to Serious Consequences

Untreated dental infections will grow and move over time. You can’t just wait out an infection of this nature; you need treatment. If you don’t seek proper dental care, a tooth infection can spread to the root canals, and from there, spread to other oral tissues. This can cause a number of dangerous health side effects, like blood clots. If you wait to address your infection, your dentist may be forced to use tooth extraction to remove the dangerous tooth. It’s best to address cases of tooth decay as soon as possible.


At Lake Orion Family Dentistry, Dr. Brad Greenfield works to improve patients’ wellbeing, as well as their oral health, and he is proud to offer holistic, 100% metal-free dentistry. To learn more about root canal therapy, or to schedule a dental appointment, call our office in Lake Orion, MI, today at 248-693-6213. We proudly welcome patients and families from around Lake Orion, MI, as well as Auburn Hills, Rochester Hills, Clarkston, Oxford, all surrounding communities. Our office also has charging stations for electrical car parking!