Root Canal Infections: What You Need to Know

Root Canal Infections: What You Need to Know

A root canal is a treatment recommended to save and repair a tooth that is infected or damaged. The procedure entails getting rid of the infected part, which is usually the pulp, cleaning it, then filling and sealing the tooth. The main reason why a tooth pulp becomes infected is a deep cavity, cracked tooth, and repeated treatment to the same tooth. The term root canal refers to cleaning the canal inside the roots of the tooth. Here is a bit more about it that we at have prepared.

Steps to expect during the root canal

Here are the steps if the doctor agrees that a root canal is what you require to treat your infected tooth.


If a dentist suspects your tooth may be infected beyond normal cleaning, he or she will conduct an x-ray. It will help him or her to identify the location of the decay.


After the problem has been identified and a root canal recommended for the treatment, a local anesthesia is administered. The anesthesia dulls everything. Thus, the widespread belief that a root canal is quite painful merely is not true.


With specialized equipment, the dentist makes an opening and sucks out the infected tooth pulp.


The roots that were opened to remove the rotting pulp are filled with a particular material and then sealed using dental cement.

Some Issues You May Face During a Root Canal

A root canal is a procedure that usually requires a fair bit of recovery. Dentists only recommend this procedure when there is a significant infection or inflammation that could cause tooth decay. Besides that, if continuous treatment is required for one tooth or it is cracked, it might be time for the root canal.

When a root canal is performed, it will help prevent the pain and the chances of developing abscesses. For most people, the procedure goes on flawlessly. However, some complications may arise because of the surgery. If you understand these issues, it can help you to prepare yourself mentally for the recovery. You will be able to go back to your daily activities.


Since a root canal involves cleaning and meddling with the root of the tooth, expect some pain days after the operation. The pain can be just a dull pain or a very sharp pain. However, at no point should it be so bad that it makes it impossible for you to do anything.

However, in some rare cases, bacteria are left behind after the root canal. These bacteria can grow and cause pain later. Thus, if the area heals and then begins to hurt a few days later, you need to contact the dentist. He or she will know what needs to be done.

Other Problem Areas

In some instances, you may have more than one root that is causing you problems. If a canal is not identified, bacteria can grow there, which can mean another root canal needs to be performed. A second surgery can be quite taxing. It will mean the dentist has to remove any fillings and crowns that were there. It will then allow him access to the roots of your teeth.

Undetected Root Cracks

Sometimes, the dentist may fail to notice a crack in one of the roots. It can, later on, cause bacteria to grow, which will mean more treatments. If the dentist does not notice and thus seal any crack, it could provide an avenue for the further growth of bacteria in that area.

Defective Sealants

With time, the seals used on the roots could erode. It will allow bacteria to find their way into the roots of the teeth. Your doctor is likely to warn of such a possible complication. Thus, you will be required to take good care of the tooth to prevent this from occurring. However, in some cases, it will happen despite proper care, and you will need to go for further treatments.

What to Keep in Mind

When you go for a root canal, ensure that you have it done by a qualified dentist. It would be best that you find a dental office with some experience in carrying out this procedure. Besides that, it is paramount that you follow all instructions issued to you. Thus, if you are told to avoid certain foods, ensure that you do no matter how you love them. Immediately you feel that something is amiss, call your doctor and tell him. Besides that, you need to ensure that you never miss any routine checkups. At these visits, any issues can be detected before they turn into a costly exercise.


While a root canal is a great way to repair teeth, the best option remains prevention. Thus, you should brush your teeth often and avoid using them for more than their intended purpose. For instance, never use them to remove caps from bottles.