An assortment of medical supplies including scissors, dental floss, and a thermometer. Photo by Ibrahim Boran on Unsplash.

Root canal treatment is a common procedure that may be recommended for a wide variety of reasons. In all cases, however, it aims to address the same issue: the inflammation or infection of the soft tissue inside the root canal. 

In this article, we’ll look at root canal treatment and the reasons you might have it recommended  by your endodontist. For more information on root canal procedures and treatments, please get in touch with Beautiful Smiles Dental Spa today!

These are the most common reasons you may need a root canal:

  • Improperly placed crown
  • Severe decay
  • Multiple procedures on the same tooth
  • Chipped or cracked tooth 

Below, you’ll find a more detailed explanation of how these conditions can necessitate a root canal treatment.

Misplaced Crown

A tooth may have a crown placed on it for a number of reasons, including decay, injury, or protection from further erosion. When a crown is placed improperly, however, bacteria can work its way below the surface and down into the pulp (soft tissue) of the tooth’s root. 

Sometimes a crown falls off after a given period of time, or an unexpected injury causes it to dislocate ever so slightly. Regardless of the precipitating cause, when a crown is improperly aligned or attached, you are much more susceptible to infection and needing a root canal. 

Deep Decay

This reason for root canal treatment is pretty self-explanatory, as one of the primary motivations for the procedure is to ameliorate the infection and inflammation. When you don’t practice healthy dental habits like brushing, flossing, or avoiding sugary foods, you’re much more likely to develop plaque buildup and eventual tooth decay. 

A root canal treatment becomes necessary when the pulp or soft tissue of the tooth’s root becomes inflamed or infected, and decay is often a precursor to both of these adverse effects. In order to describe your chances of needing a root canal, it is important to establish and consistently practice the healthy dental habits mentioned above.

Overworked Tooth

In a rare but relevant number of cases, a cavity filling may fail to be effective. Although there are a number of clinical reasons for this, most commonly it boils down to a poorly performed filling followed by exposure to bacteria or infection. In these instances, a second or third endodontic treatment may be necessary, and the more a tooth is worked on, the weaker it tends to become.

If you have one or more teeth in your mouth that have been worked on multiple times for the same reason, be aware that a root canal may be necessary in the future.

Chipped or Cracked Tooth

A chipped or cracked tooth is similar to a fractured or broken bone in that it makes the structure more vulnerable to inflammation, infection, and general pain. Whether it’s from an injury, poor dental hygiene habits, or nighttime teeth grinding, a chipped or cracked tooth should be fixed as soon as possible. Failure to do so may leave the tooth at risk of pulp infection and, if left untreated, end up in a root canal procedure.


As we’ve seen in this brief article, there are a few different reasons why root canal treatment may be necessary. Fortunately, this is a highly effective and routine procedure, so the risks and complications are low. What’s more, the treatment will save your natural tooth and minimize the need for future dental work.

For more information on root canal and endodontic treatment, please call Beautiful Smiles Dental Spa today!