How Long Does Pain Last After a Root Canal Treatment?

Root canal treatments are carried out by an endodontist wherein an infected pulp tissues and blood vessels are removed. The procedure is carried out using a local anesthesia to numb the tooth and gums and reduce patient’s discomfort. Usually root canal treatment is pain free but some individuals may experience mild pain during and after the procedure.

Post operative root canal pain and gum soreness on average can last for three days. Some patients don’t feel the pain at all while some others may feel the pain for even 1 to 2 weeks or more. This range is common and normal so there is nothing to worry about.

One may ask how long does pain last after a root canal treatment. Well, in some patients the pay last for few days after root canal. Since, root canal involves deeper root tissue penetration tissue inflammation is not uncommon. Gum inflammation and sensitivity after root canal treatment may be little uncomfortable to the patient.

There are certain factors that determine how long does pain last after a root canal procedure. The oral health of the individual before, during and after the treatment plays a great role in inducing a pain after root canal. If the patient has a very low dental health then most likely gum infection and inflammation can occur. This can also further delay the healing process.

What to do for pain after root canal treatment?

Pain after root canal procedure can subside within few days or a week. One can purchase over the counter analgesic or pain killers to relieve the pain in the tooth.

  • Avoid hard or chewy foods- Avoid eating foods that require chewing or biting for several days after root canal treatment. After root canal treatment tooth root is very sensitive and delicate so avoid chewing food before placing a crown. If you happen to bit on it, it can cause more swelling of the gums and may even cause tooth to crack or fracture.
  • Take rest- One should try to relax more. Don’t do any physical activities which would raise your blood pressure. While sleeping keep your head above the body to reduce exerted pressure on the tooth. One can bundle up few pillows under the head and keep the head elevated.
  • Antibiotics- One can relieve pain after root canal treatment with antibiotics to prevent infection from occurring and other analgesics such as naproxen, aspirin, acetaminophen and ibuprofen. These analgesics will reduce inflammation and thus swelling alleviating pain.
  • Apply ice pack- Apply cold ice pack directly on the outside of the mouth on the root canal site. Ice pack can numb the pain. Repeat this several times at an interval of 5 minutes after the root canal.
  • Follow up checkup- If the pain is intense and severe swelling occurs or if the pain does not subside within 48 hours, see the endodontist immediately. There may some other severe cause for the pain.

Pain before placing the crown- Some individuals may experience throbbing pain after temporary crown has been placed. This pain may last for two weeks. However, once the temporary crown is replaced with a permanent crown, pain will gradually ease on its own and will disappear completely.


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  3. What is Root Canal Treatment?
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  6. Understanding the procedure – Pain after root canal
  7. What Causes a Gum Infection After Root Canal Treatment?
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  14. What is a Possible Root Canal Alternative?
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