John Powers, DMD

UncategorizedHow do I know if I need a filling or a root canal?

How do I know if I need a filling or a root canal?

How do I know if I need a Filling or a Root canal?

Both dental procedures are very common and used to treat similar tooth issues, fillings and root canals couldn’t be more different. These two dental procedures are typically used to treat a cavity or a fractured tooth. Which typically has patients asking if they really need a tooth filling or a root canal?

What is a Filling?

Fillings will help restore any teeth that had been damaged by decay back to their normal conditions to prevent further decay. Typically dental fillings are used when the cavity is minor and has not reached the pulp of the tooth or if the root of the tooth is not infected. During this process, the dentist will clean out the tooth or crack and then fill it with a resin-based substance aka the filling to protect the tooth from further damage and from future damage.

What is Root Canal?

A root canal otherwise known as endothermic therapy is needed when you have a severely infected tooth that has reached the pulp or the root of the tooth. This is caused by untreated cavities and cracks in your teeth. During the treatment, your dentist will save your natural tooth by removing the damaged pulp to relieve you of pain, infection, and inflammation. Afterward, a dental crown will be placed to restore full tooth functionality.

Do I need a Filling or Root Canal?

Signs that you need a filling:

  • You have a throbbing or sharp pain in your tooth.
  • Your tooth hurts when you chew or bite down.
  • You can actually see a dark spot or hole on your tooth.
  • Your tooth becomes sensitive when exposed to hot or cold temperatures, or sweet, sticky, sour foods.

Signs that you need a Root Canal:

  • Your tooth pain is severe, especially when you chew or put pressure on your tooth.
  • You notice a small, pimple-like bump on your gum line near your painful tooth.
  • Your tooth is severely painful and has a dark or discolored appearance.
  • Your gums are tender and swollen around your painful tooth.

John Powers DMD provides great cosmetic care for patients to ensure you go home with a beautiful smile. Visit our website or contact us to make an appointment with us (

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *