Tooth Replacement OptionsGlenn Dale, MD

To understand the signs and reasons for why you need endodontic surgery, it is important to understand the inner layers of a tooth. The outermost layer of the tooth is the enamel, which protects the tooth and acts as the main surface for chewing food. The next level is the dentin that surrounds the third layer, known as the pulp. The pulp contains all of the nerves and blood vessels in the tooth.

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    Signs That You Need Endodontic Surgery

    If the root of the tooth has an infection, it is most likely due to an abscess or other condition that is below the root spreading up through the tooth. This is why it is crucial to seek professional treatment from an endodontist who has the expertise and tools to perform the necessary endodontic surgery. Do not hesitate to schedule an examination to determine the extent and cause of the pain. If endodontic surgery is necessary, there will be specific signs to look out for. Here are seven signs that you need endodontic surgery.

    #1. Continuous pain after a professional cleaning

    While it is common to experience pain from having food sticking between the teeth, the pain one will feel that requires endodontic surgery will be much more severe. A general dentist may be able to treat a minor infection with non-surgical means, but if the infection is too great, then an endodontist will be necessary.

    #2. Increased sensitivity to hot and cold

    When you consume anything hot or cold, you may have a slight reaction on your teeth or in your mouth, which is completely natural. However, if the reaction is solely from the teeth and is much greater than normal, then you may need an endodontic procedure. If you have the reaction to any drink or food item, then you definitely need an examination. The pain can be due to the enamel on the teeth being weaker or the inside of the tooth having an infection.

    #3. Pain and tenderness to touching the teeth or chewing

    While it is possible to hurt the teeth by applying too much pressure, an endodontic surgery is only necessary when the teeth feel intense pain from hardly any pressure. If you feel pain when chewing on any type of food or from the slightest touch of a tooth brush, then you need to schedule an examination as soon as possible. People may assume that this pain is only temporary or bearable, but the pain will only get worse and interrupt one’s daily routine.

    #4. Swelling and drainage of gums around the tooth

    If you notice any odd drainage or swelling around a specific tooth, then a root canal may be the most efficient method to treat and save that tooth. When the pulp of the tooth is infected, it can slowly spread to the gums and even jawbone surrounding the tooth. When this occurs, it is even more crucial to seek professional services such as endodontic surgery.

    #5. Abnormal discoloration of a specific tooth

    While teeth gradually discolor from consuming wine, coffee, tea, tobacco and other products, it is not common to see a drastic discoloration. Even if one is forgetful with brushing twice a day, a sudden discoloration in the teeth is unnatural. The discoloration is the result of an infection spreading through the tooth to the gums and jawbone. Major discoloration of a tooth is a sign of an infection that will most likely require endodontic surgery to treat.

    #6. You have a dental abscess at the bottom of the tooth root

    A dental abscess forms from an infection in the tooth and starts at the bottom of the tooth root. A traditional dentist cannot treat a dental abscess without a form of surgery. Thus, it is crucial to seek professional treatment since a dental abscess causes incredible pain in and around the specific tooth.

    #7. You notice and feel a tiny bump near the tooth

    This bump will appear to be a pimple on the gums near or around the infected tooth that is causing pain. If you notice this and other symptoms, then you will most likely need professional treatment. By visiting an endodontist, you will be able to find the cause for this bump and receive the most effective solution.

    If you live in the Glenn Dale area, call (301) 202-3499 to schedule your dental exam so that you can remain in good health or receive treatment for a current condition.

    Check out what others are saying about our dental services on Yelp: 7 Signs You Need Endodontic Surgery Glenn Dale

    Definition of Endodontic Terminology


    Cementum is that bone-like tissue that forms the outer surface on the root of the tooth.

    Dental Pulp

    Dental pulp is the inner-most layer of the tooth with connective tissue that contains blood vessels and nerve tissue.


    Dentin is the inner layer of the tooth structure that is immediately under the enamel and surrounds the dental pulp.

    Direct Pulp Cap

    A direct pulp cap is a procedure in which a professional treats exposed pulp with a therapeutic material to help the tooth heal.


    The enamel is the hard calcified layer that covers the entire tooth and is subject to interaction with multiple substances.


    An endodontist is a specialist who focuses on treating issues, diseases and conditions that affect the inner-most layer of the tooth, the dental pulp.


    A pulpectomy is a procedure that involves the complete removal of pulp tissue from the root canal in a tooth.


    Pulpitis is another term to describe the inflammation of the dental pulp due to an injury or infection.


    A pulpotomy is a procedure involving the removal of a portion of diseased or infected pulp in order to protect the healthy portions of the pulp and teeth still in the mouth.

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