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10 Most Common Side-Effects of a Root Canal Treatment

When you have a decaying or infected tooth, the best way to preserve it is to use a safe dental procedure called a root canal. The damaged tooth is removed, and the inside of the tooth is cleaned and sealed. Root canal treatment is usually done by a dentist or an endodontist.

However, there are some risks and side effects associated with this treatment. Here are the 10 most common side effects of root canal treatment:

10 Most Common Side-Effects of a Root Canal Treatment

Pain and discomfort

Root canal treatment is usually not painful. However, you may have some discomfort during and after the procedure. Some people feel more or less pain depending on their situation.

However, this discomfort is usually mild and can be treated with over-the-counter pain medication. Some people may also need a sedative during the procedure.

Swelling of the gums

After a root canal treatment, the gums may swell due to the inflammation of the tissue. This is a normal side effect and usually resolves within a few days.

However, if the swelling persists or becomes severe, it is important to contact your dentist, as this may be a sign of an infection.

Tenderness of the teeth

When you have a root canal treatment, it is common for your teeth to feel tender afterward. This is perfectly normal and is nothing to worry about.

The tenderness is usually only temporary and will disappear within a few days. If you are concerned about the tenderness, or if it lasts longer than a few days, you can always talk to your dentist.

Increased sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures

If you’ve recently had a root canal treatment, you may have noticed that your teeth are now more sensitive to hot and cold temperatures. This is perfectly normal and is simply a side effect of the treatment.

While it may be a bit uncomfortable initially, rest assured that this sensitivity will eventually disappear. In the meantime, try to avoid foods and beverages that are extremely hot or cold, and be sure to brush and floss to avoid irritating your teeth.

Difficulty chewing or jaw stiffness

After your root canal treatment, you may have difficulty chewing, and your jaw may feel stiff for a few days. This is because root canal treatment can cause some inflammation in the tissues around your tooth.

These side effects, however, are usually minor and will go away on their own.

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Headaches and Earaches

Headaches and earaches are both very common side effects of a root canal.

There are a few reasons why you may experience these side effects after a root canal. First, the procedure can be quite stressful, leading to tension headaches. Secondly, the numbing medication used during the procedure can sometimes cause ear pain.

Don’t hesitate to contact your dentist if you experience any headaches or earaches after your root canal.

Allergic reaction to medication

Although root canals are generally safe, there is a small risk of developing an allergic reaction to the medication used during the procedure.

Symptoms of an allergic reaction may include:

  • itching
  • redness
  • swelling
  • or difficulty breathing.

If you experience any of the above symptoms after a root canal, it is important to seek medical attention immediately.

Bite feels uneven

After a root canal treatment, your bite may feel uneven. This is because the tooth treated is now slightly smaller than the adjacent teeth. Your dentist may adjust your bite during a follow-up visit.

This is done by placing a small amount of filling material on the tooth that was treated. The filling material will be the same color as your tooth. The dentist will then adjust your bite so that the treated tooth is the same height as the adjacent teeth.

Tooth discoloration

Another side-effect of a root canal treatment is tooth discoloration.

The tooth discoloration may occur because of the following reasons:

  • The tooth is more porous after the root canal treatment, thus absorbing more stains.
  • The tooth may have been damaged during the procedure, leading to discoloration.
  • The tooth may have been exposed to certain chemicals during the procedure, which can also lead to discoloration.

If you are concerned about tooth discoloration after a root canal treatment, you can talk to your dentist. Certain steps can be taken to minimize the risk of tooth discoloration, such as using a sealant or toothpaste for sensitive teeth.

Acute infection

It is normal to experience some degree of discomfort after a root canal treatment. However, if you develop an acute infection at the site of your treatment, it’s important to seek medical attention immediately. Infections can cause serious complications and even death if left untreated.


Some risks and side effects are associated with root canal treatment, but the vast majority are minor and temporary. The most important thing to remember is that you should seek medical attention immediately if you experience any serious side effects, such as an infection.

Remember, if you have root canal treatment, it is important to take care of your teeth. You should brush and floss your teeth regularly and see your dentist for regular checkups to ensure it is healing properly.

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