February 17, 2020

Why Some Root Canals Hurt

Everything seems fine with your tooth but then one day it starts to ache or it is sensitive when you drink hot and cold things.  Sometimes the first signs of a tooth abscessing are very minor and then one day it is a full blown tooth ache. It will have a consistent ache and throb like there is a heartbeat in it. If left alone,  swelling may occur with a blister that appears above the gum line near the tooth that hurts and the infection may cause death if not treated because the infection can get into your blood stream.

When you go to the dentist for the tooth ache, he will take an x-ray of the tooth to see how bad the infection is and to see which tooth it is. He then will send you home with an antibiotic and maybe pain medication. The reason he starts you on an antibiotic first is to try to get rid of most of the infection. If  the dentist tried to do a root canal the day you came in with the tooth ache,  it would cause more pain because it is very hard to get a tooth numb where there is infection. So, the dentist should start you on an antibiotic and wait a few days for it to take effect.

If you do not take a strong enough antibiotic or if you do not let the medication work for a few days, it could hurt when the root canal is done. The cause: there is still a lot of infection and inflammation around the tooth thus making it difficult to get numb. So, don’t be upset if you return in a few days to the dentist office to have the root canal done and he sends you home with a different antibiotic and waits a few more days because you are still in pain—pain is a sign of infection still present. It is so beneficial for you to wait because ultimately you will have a painless root canal by getting rid of the infection.

It is also important not to wait to have the root canal done after the medication is finished because the infection will come right back and the pain will return. So, if you have to have one done in the future— have a painless one!