My dentist completed a root canal on my right-side second molar in March. I still felt sensitivity and pressure in the tooth in June, and the tooth felt hot. When I returned to the dentist, she took an x-ray and said that she missed one of the canals in my tooth so that I would need another root canal. I appreciate her honesty, but this has caused me a lot of anxiety. My dentist treated the tooth and filled it two weeks ago. I finished the antibiotics that she prescribed. However, I occasionally still feel pain and pressure in the tooth. I am afraid that this root canal failed, and I will need an extraction and implant. Could my dentist have missed something in the canal again? – Thank you. Dresden from Richmond, VA
Thank you for your question. We understand your concern. It seems like your dentist made the right decision. Although Dr. Cha would need to examine your tooth and x-rays for an accurate diagnosis, the sensitivity you feel may be from the recent dental work on the tooth; it should resolve soon.
Should You Feel Pain or Pressure After Root Canal?
Reasons that you may feel pain or pressure after root canal treatment include:
- The root canal treatment failed.
- The procedure may have pushed infected tissue toward the root tip.
- Your dentist may have missed a root canal, and it requires treatment.
Your dentist retreated your tooth, accessed another canal, and removed the infection, so the tooth pressure and pain should gradually improve. If it worsens, you should contact your dentist; however, if it is decreasing or about the same, wait a few days to see if it improves.
Your dentist may need to adjust your bite to decrease the pressure on your teeth when you bite down or chew. Although you probably do not require tooth removal and an implant, you may consider seeing a root canal specialist (endodontist) for a second opinion.
Meanwhile, avoid things that can irritate your tooth and increase sensitivity, including crunchy, hard, or sticky foods.
Dr. Jerome Cha, a Tulsa, Oklahoma, cosmetic dentist, sponsors this post.