Do Root Canals Hurt? Managing Post-Operative Discomfort

Affordable Root Canals in Thornhill, Ontario

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Root canal therapy is a popular dental procedure that can save a tooth from extraction when the inner pulp becomes infected or damaged. While root canals are highly efficient at eliminating pain and infection, patients might wonder if a tooth with a root canal can still hurt.

In this blog post, we’ll look at the likelihood of post-operative pain and discomfort following a root canal and discuss how to deal with it.

At SkyRise Dental in Thornhill, Ontario, our team of professional dentists is here to provide you with the most excellent care and guidance for all your dental concerns.

Root Canals: An Introduction

A root canal treatment is a dental procedure that removes infected or damaged pulp from the interior of a tooth. The pulp contains nerves and blood vessels, which can cause extreme pain and discomfort when infected.

The dentist cleans out the infected pulp, disinfects the root canals, and seals the tooth to prevent further infection during a root canal procedure. Moreover, this procedure efficiently relieves discomfort and prevents tooth extraction.

However, it is crucial to note that, like with any medical procedure, some individuals may feel post-operative pain and discomfort following a root canal. Let’s look at what’s causing this and how to deal with it.

Possible Causes of Post-Operative Pain


Removing infected pulp and cleaning the root canals may cause inflammation in the surrounding tissues. This inflammation might cause mild to moderate discomfort.

Tissue Irritation

Dental instruments are used throughout the treatment; sometimes, a small amount of debris or irritation might damage the surrounding tissues, producing temporary discomfort.

Pre-existing Infection

A pre-existing infection in the surrounding bone or gum tissue can cause pain after the root canal. Although this is rare, it is still possible.

Can Teeth With Root Canals Still Hurt?

How to Manage Post-Operative Discomfort

Pain Reliever

Over-the-counter pain relievers such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen can help control mild discomfort. If necessary, your dentist may also prescribe stronger pain medications.


Give your body time to heal. In the days following your root canal, avoid strenuous activities and rest as much as possible.

Cold Compress

Applying a cold compress to the affected area might help reduce inflammation and pain.

Avoid Certain Foods

Avoid soft, non-irritating foods to avoid aggravating the treated tooth. You should also avoid extremely hot or cold foods and beverages.

Follow Post-Op Instructions

Your dentist will provide specific post-operative instructions. Follow these instructions carefully to promote healing and limit the risk of complications.

Dental Check-Up

Attend your follow-up appointments as scheduled. This allows your dentist to monitor your progress and address any concerns.

While there may be some post-operative discomfort after a root canal, the majority of patients find significant relief from the pain that led them to seek treatment. To ensure a smooth recovery, you must be patient and follow your dentist’s recommendations.

If you are experiencing severe or prolonged discomfort, don’t hesitate to contact your dentist for further evaluation and guidance.

Our experienced team at SkyRise Dental in Thornhill, Ontario, is here to provide top-quality dental care, including root canals, to ensure your oral health and well-being.

If you have concerns regarding a root canal or are experiencing post-operative pain, please call us for professional guidance and assistance. Your comfort and oral health are our top priority!

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