Home HealthTopics Health Centers Reference Library Research
Join us on Facebook Join us on Facebook Share on Facebook

Root Canals

Sensitivity after root canal treatment

09/11/2007

Question:

I had the root canal procedure done a little over a week now but I still feel a slight discomfort in the treated tooth. Whenever I tapped on it with my toothbrush, I can still feel it. My question is, is there a possibility that my endodontist did not completely remove the pulp that he`s suppose to? Is that why I`m still feeling the discomfort? And isn`t the treated tooth supposed to be completed "dead"?

Answer:

Having some post-treatment tenderness to biting or tapping on the tooth can be normal. The inflammation or infection that was in the bone surrounding the tooth in question needs some time to heal. Removing the pulp tissue (nerve) only resolves the immediate problem of thermal sensitivity. It does not immediately resolve any pain on chewing.

The idea of "completely dead" is false. There are sensory nerves in the ligament that surrounds the tooth. They are not affected by the root canal. If you bite on a piece of bone by accident with a root canal treated tooth it will still hurt.

For more information:

Go to the Root Canals health topic, where you can:

Response by:

John M Nusstein, DDS John M Nusstein, DDS
Associate Professor of Endodontics
College of Dentistry
The Ohio State University