When the nerve tissue of a tooth becomes infected or dies, a root canal is necessary to save the tooth. It is a comfortable and common procedure that can preserve your tooth and maintain the health of your mouth.

You may notice that you have an infected tooth when:

• There is extreme sensitivity to hot or cold.
• The tooth hurts under biting or pressure forces.
• There is throbbing or severe tooth pain.
• The area around the tooth is swollen.
• There is a bad taste and odor in the mouth.
• There is discoloration or darkening of the tooth.

Sometimes there could be no symptoms at all.

The nerve tissue becomes infected when bacteria penetrates the inner tooth layers. The tooth’s nerve is a soft tissue consisting of blood vessels. It is contained in the pulp chamber that extends from the tooth’s core down through its roots.

The primary cause of infection is a deep cavity that allows bacteria to penetrate the enamel and dentin layers into the pulp. Occasionally, the pulp dies due to a fracture or impact to the tooth.
To determine if your tooth has an infected nerve, we do a thorough examination. The exam often includes x-rays and assessing the health of the nerve. We may also conduct sensitivity tests and visual tooth discoloration checks.

If it is determined that the tooth is infected, we may perform root canal therapy to remove the infection and save the tooth. It is crucial to treat an infected tooth to prevent the infection from spreading through the root tips and surrounding areas.

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