Root canal therapy is an excellent way to save a tooth that would otherwise die and need to be removed. This procedure may be necessary when a tooth is infected or sick due to injury or decay. A root canal may also be needed if a patient is experiencing chronic pain when the tooth comes in contact with hot and cold liquids, pain from pressure or biting down, or if the patient is in danger of a tooth infection spreading.
Root canal therapy involves removing the infected pulp in the center and the canals of the tooth. Once the infected pulp is removed, the remaining chamber is filled with a rubber-based material to seal it off. All teeth that have had root canal therapy must be protected with a crown because teeth that have had the pulp removed are more susceptible to fracture.