If your dentist has prescribed a root canal treatment for you and you want to know if the root canal treatment is painful, kindly note that root canal treatment is a bit painful and you will also experience some pains after the root canal treatment.

Prior to the treatment, any pain you feel is as a result of the bacterial infection in your tooth. One of the symptoms of root canal infection is the inflammation or swelling of the gingival tissue around the affected tooth. This may cause pain to the patient. The root canal treatment is carried out to eliminate this pain. The root canal treatment itself is painful to some extent because it is slightly invasive – it requires drilling into the affected tooth.

Many patients do not want to undergo a root canal treatment because of the fear and anxiety over the dental procedure. However, a local anaesthetic is administered to the concerned patient to numb the affected tooth and mouth area. Your dentists can give you some sedation dentistry, such as nitrous oxide, to calm you and make you relax.

After the root canal treatment, a level of pain is also expected. Most patients have reported that they felt a little sensitivity or tenderness for a few days after undergoing a root canal treatment. But this pain should not last long.  Root canal pain that persists for a long time is abnormal.

Here are some reasons why a patient may feel pain after the root canal treatment:

  • Even though the dentist removes the nerve root from the affected tooth during the procedure, there would still be some small nerves in the gingival tissues and ligaments around the affected tooth. When this becomes inflamed for some days after the dental procedure, these small nerve endings register discomfort for the patient.
  • Instrument damage: during the dental procedure, it is possible that the dental tools used to clean out the root canal may inadvertently damage the sensitive surrounding tissue.
  • High temporary filling: the patient may experience pain if the dentist does not put in or smooth down the temporary filling well enough. Even if the temporary filling is a little higher than the surrounding tooth, it may cause the teeth to bite harder on that spot, which can cause tooth sore.

Just as stated above, the discomfort and sensitivity associated with root canal treatment should go away a few days after the treatment. However, if the pain doesn’t get better or unrelieved by home measures but get severe, it is important to visit your dentist for an evaluation.

More Information about Root Canal

Basically, a root canal is the pulp cavity in the root of a tooth, containing the nerves, pulp, and blood vessels. Root canal treatment is the dental treatment carried out to remove diseased tissue from inside the root canal and replaced the cavity with an inert dental material.

The root canal treatment is administered to repair and save an infected or severely damaged tooth. The root canal treatment procedure requires removing the damaged area of the dental pulp, cleaning the affected area, disinfecting it, filling it up with dental materials, and sealing it. The major causes of damage to the dental pulp are trauma, repeated dental treatment to the tooth, a deep cavity, or a cracked tooth, trauma.

What to Expect During a Root Canal Treatment?

Do you need root canal treatment? Don’t hesitate to consult your dentist. Here is what to expect if you visit the dental office for root canal treatment.

  • Dental examination: the first thing your dentist would do is to examine your dental condition. If your dentist confirms that you indeed need a root canal treatment, he or she would then take an X-rays of your mouth to ascertain where the dental decay is located i.e. the specific tooth to treat.
  • Anaesthesia: before your dentist commences treatment, he or she would administer local anaesthesia to the affected tooth. Actually, a root canal is not painful than a dental filling.
  • Pulpectomy: this involves boring a hole into the root of the affected tooth to access the cavity, where the damaged or diseased tooth pulp. This enables the dentist to remove the diseased tooth pulp.
  • Dental filling: once the diseased tooth pulp has been removed, the bored root is filled with dental material (gutta-percha material) and sealed off with dental cement (sealant).

Root Canal Treatment Aftercare

With proper care, the restored tooth should last for a lifetime. According to studies, root canal treatments have a high success rate. However, to ensure the longevity of your treated tooth, there are some tips that must be observed. Here are some ways to take care of your treated and restored teeth after a root canal treatment:

While waiting for the final restoration, your dentist would place a temporary filling in the affected area. Try as much as possible to avoid chewing or biting down on the affected tooth until the final restoration is placed. And when you have gotten your final restoration, do the following:

  • Observe good and proper oral hygiene practices: after the treatment, make sure to brush and floss your teeth at least twice daily. Doing this regularly can help in preventing future dental problems.
  • Schedule regular visit to your dentist: it is very important that you visit your dentist regularly for dental cleaning, examination, and check-up. If you can schedule a regular visit to your dentist, endeavour to make a biannual visit.
  • Avoid biting down or chewing on hard foods: as much as possible, avoid biting hard on objects, avoid chewing hard foods that can cause your teeth to break, avoid using your teeth as tools to break nuts or open crown corks. All these and can harm the root canals.

Managing Pains from Root Canal Treatment At Home

After the treatment, your dentist may prescribe a pain reliever to you manage the pain. Otherwise, any over-the-counter pain reliever like Ibuprofen should be effective at relieving the pain from the root canal treatment. When taking these medications, ensure to carefully follow any given instruction. If you feel like the pain medication is not working, quickly contact your dentist.

Do you have any question or just want to know more about root canal treatment? Kindly contact us today. Our professional and friendly dentist would be happy to attend to you.