Why Do We Need a Root Canal? - Corbet Locke D.D.S. Corbet Locke D.D.S. in Woodway
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Why Do We Need a Root Canal?

added on: June 25, 2015

If you have a dental infection then you have more than just an aching tooth. You actually have a high risk of losing the tooth entirely. To help prevent tooth loss we can often treat and infected tooth with a common endodontic procedure, a root canal. Why do we need a root canal? We need one to preserve the health and beauty of our smiles.

The Causes and Symptoms of Dental Infection

How do our teeth become infected? The first step is usually decay. A layer of tooth enamel, the hardest substance in the human body, protects our teeth. However, once the enamel becomes worn or damaged, bacteria can bypass it and reach the inner layers of dentin. Here, a cavity can develop. A variety of factors can lead to weakened enamel, including poor oral hygiene, chips, dental fractures, brushing too hard, and grinding your teeth.

Once the decay continues to spread and reaches the inner pulp, an infection or abscess can form. Common warning signs include:

  • Tooth sensitivity to hot or cold foods/drinks
  • Toothaches
  • Pain when chewing
  • Fever
  • Swelling near the tooth
  • A foul tasting discharge

If you don’t seek treatment then the tooth may die and require extraction to prevent infection from reaching surrounding teeth or the jawbone. Fortunately, we can provide a treatment to address an infected tooth.

Root Canal Therapy

The procedure begins with the doctor administering a local anesthetic. At this stage, we open the tooth to allow the dentist to remove the infected tissue from the inside of the tooth. The tooth’s interior and root canals will then need to be thoroughly cleaned. To complete the procedure we fill the tooth with a restorative material and cap it using a dental crown.

Completing Your Smile

The dental crown looks natural and allows you to eat and speak with comfort and ease. In addition, the restoration protects the remaining tooth structure and helps safeguard the tooth against further decay or infection.


We look forward to providing families with exceptional care and advanced treatment options. To schedule an appointment with Corbet Locke, DDS, please contact us at (254) 776-4888. Our office welcomes patients living in Waco, Hewitt, McGregor, Woodway, and nearby cities.