Signs of infection after root canal

What Are The Causes and Signs of Infection After Root Canal Treatment?

Apr 01, 2023
A root canal can repair and save a severely decayed tooth. It involves removing the damaged area of the tooth, and cleaning and sealing it. While effective, endodontic treatment has a few risks, like an infection. If you're worried about infection after your root canal treatment, visit an SW Calgary dentist for an assessment.

What Are The Causes of Infection After Root Canal Treatment?

After getting a root canal in Calgary, SW, you may get an infection, and several factors can cause this:
    • Oversized filling
An oversized filling is the most common cause of infection after root canal treatment. Oversized fillings are larger than they should be and can cause inflammation in the pulp chamber, nerve, or both.
    • Multiple untreated canals
If you have more than one untreated canal, the risk of inflammation is much greater. This is because there are multiple places where bacteria can grow, and each one becomes a potential source of inflammation. If your patient has two or more untreated canals, then consider doing a root canal retreatment on them as soon as possible.
    • Cracked tooth roots
A cracked tooth root is a common cause of infection after root canal treatment. This can happen when you experience trauma to your tooth, such as hitting it with a hard object or grinding your teeth too much.
    • Improper hygiene
If you're not brushing and flossing, your teeth will get gum disease. This serious condition can lead to tooth loss, among other complications. If you have untreated gum disease, the bacteria in your mouth can enter the bloodstream to cause an infection in another part of your body. The increased risk for this complication is especially high if you've had root canal treatment or multiple root canals over time.

What Are the Signs and Symptoms of Infection After Root Canal Treatment?

Some signs of infection after a root canal include:
    • Pain in the tooth
Pain in the tooth can be mild to severe and may be present in the tooth or jaw. Pain may also be constant, intermittent, or sharp. It may throb or ache.
    • Fever
Fever is a sign of infection, but it's not the same as toothache. If you feel feverish and your body temperature is elevated, it can be caused by other conditions, such as flu symptoms or an infection in your sinuses and throat that aren't related to your mouth.
    • Swelling around the tooth
Swelling can cause pain or a sensation of pressure. If you feel swelling in the gums or jaw, it may indicate an abscess is forming—an abscess form when bacteria enter your mouth and settle in an area that's been injured.
    • Change the color of your gums.
Your gums may become darker than usual. This is a sign that bacteria are present in the mouth, which could lead to an infection. If your gums take on a darker shade of red or bleed when you brush or floss, this could be a sign of gum disease or periodontitis.
    • Loose teeth
After the root canal treatment, you may notice that your teeth are becoming loose or even falling out. This can be caused by the bacteria in your mouth trying to spread from one tooth to another. If this happens, it's important not to panic—root canal treatments effectively prevent infection and keep your teeth healthy.

How to Prevent Infection After Root Canal Treatment?

Infection after root canal treatment is not uncommon, but you can prevent it with these tips:
  1. Keep the area clean. Consider using an antibacterial mouthwash as well.
  2. Avoid chewing hard foods or putting much pressure on the tooth. This could cause the filling to come out or crack the tooth, making it more susceptible to infection.
  3. See your dentist regularly for checkups and cleanings to ensure that potential problems are caught early and treated before they become infections.

When to Seek Medical Attention for an Infection After Root Canal Treatment?

Seek medical attention right away if you notice these symptoms:
  • Persistent pain or swelling in the treated tooth or the surrounding area
  • A fever
  • Increased drainage from the site
  • Redness or tenderness in the gums
  • A foul taste in your mouth

Schedule an Appointment

Visit Image Dental for more information about root canal reinfection and how to prevent it.
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