Our patients are often referred to Creekside Endodontics because they’re suffering pain or discomfort in a tooth. Their dentist sent them because the root canal treatment will be particularly complex. There may have been a bacterial infection in the tooth, for example, requiring specialized equipment to clean small hiding places within the interior canals.
Compared to the infection pain you’ve been experiencing, your tooth will not feel the same after your treatment. The differences can include:
- Relief from the pain of the infection.
- Potential differences in the shape of the tooth.
- Tenderness caused by the procedure (though much less than the pain of infection).
A root canal treatment is unfamiliar to most people who haven’t had one, so let’s go over some common questions and scenarios.
Will the Pain Be Gone?
A root canal procedure will almost always relieve the moderate or severe pain that a dental infection can cause. This is because a successful root canal treatment will remove all infected tissues completely, and prevent any infection from returning.
How Is the Pain Resolved?
There are living tissues, nerves, and blood vessels in the root of every permanent tooth. When foreign bacteria multiply in those tissues, they cause damage and swelling, which presses sensitive nerves. This can cause discomfort and pain.
When your endodontist cleans that tissue out of the tooth, he’ll aim to remove every bit of infected material down to the microscopic level. The tissues, nerves, and blood vessels will be removed and replaced with a sanitary filling.
That means that the tooth won’t have the infected material or the nerves to feel internal pain. That should make the tooth feel much better in general, though a recovery time is needed before it will feel 100% better.
Will the Tooth’s Surface Feel Different?
This can happen in some cases. You might feel a difference on the tooth with your tongue. Here are some examples:
- A Front Tooth: You could feel an indentation or rough spot on the back of a front tooth.
- A Molar: On a back tooth, you could feel a rough spot or indentation on the top of the tooth.
These slight changes are where your endodontist used a material to seal the tooth after accessing the root canal chamber.
This is a temporary filling. A miniscule amount could come off and leave a spot that feels different. That’s okay, but if a large amount of it has fallen out, contact our office.
Your primary dentist will often be the one to place a new crown on the tooth to permanently restore it when needed. Once that is done, your tooth could feel like it is shaped differently than before. But you’ll get used to it soon. It’ll be the new normal for that tooth, and your dentist will make sure it’s a good size and shape for your smile.
Is Recovery From Surgery Uncomfortable?
After any complex procedure on a tooth, it is a standard expectation to go through some discomfort during recovery, especially if the tooth was infected. The tooth could be sore afterwards, or you could feel some tenderness in the gums or bone around the tooth.
The discomfort should last only about a week, though! With an over-the-counter medication, it can be managed. However, if you feel severe pain, you should call Creekside Endodontics immediately so we can find the cause.
Remember, the main problem inside the tooth has been solved and cleaned out, and any lingering ache is usually part of the process. Recovery discomfort can include:
- A sensation like bruising caused by the movements of the tooth during the procedure.
- Pain if you bite hard on food.
- Temporary irritation or bruising in the surrounding gums.
- The lingering effects of the tooth infection on the surrounding tissue and jawbone.
- A new tooth crown that needs to be adjusted.
Let us know if you’re having trouble managing the pain, and we can adjust your pain medication. We could also prescribe an antibiotic in some cases.
Solve Tooth Pain and Restore the Health of Your Smile
If discomfort gets worse, won’t die down, or suddenly increases, call Creekside Endodontics. We can quickly find the source of the problem, recommend a solution, and relieve your pain. Your tooth should feel better after a root canal, and we want to help you get your quality of life back.