Stem cells guarantee tissue repair and regeneration throughout life. The decision between cell self-renewal and differentiation is influenced by a specialized microenvironment called the 'stem cell niche'. In the tooth, stem cell niches are formed at specific anatomic locations of the dental pulp. The microenvironment of these niches regulates how dental pulp stem cell populations participate in tissue maintenance, repair, and regeneration. Signaling molecules such as Notch proteins are important regulators of stem cell function, with various capacities to induce proliferation or differentiation. Dental injuries often lead to odontoblast apoptosis, which triggers activation of dental pulp stem cells followed by their proliferation, migration, and differentiation into odontoblast-like cells, which elaborate a reparative dentin. Better knowledge of the regulation of dental pulp stem cells within their niches in pathological conditions will aid in the development of novel treatments for dental tissue repair and regeneration.