6 Signs Of Infection After Root Canal Treatment

6 Signs of Infection After Root Canal


Last Modified: October 3, 2023


A root canal is a dental procedure that can save a severely damaged or infected tooth, but like any medical intervention, it’s not without its risks. While complications are relatively rare, it’s essential to be aware of potential signs of infection after a root canal. In this blog post, we will discuss six key signs to watch out for to ensure your oral health remains in top shape.

Persistent Pain

One of the most common signs of infection after a root canal is persistent pain. After the procedure, you may experience some discomfort, but this should gradually improve over a few days. If you notice that the pain is worsening or not subsiding after a week or so, it can be a sign of infection. This may indicate an infection that requires attention from your dentist.


Swelling around the affected tooth or in the surrounding gum tissue is another potential sign of infection. Swelling is usually accompanied by tenderness and can make it difficult to chew or even open your mouth fully. If you notice any unusual swelling in the days following your root canal, contact your dentist promptly.

Prolonged Sensitivity

It’s common to experience some sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures immediately after a root canal. However, this sensitivity should gradually diminish. If you find that the sensitivity lingers or becomes more severe, it could be a sign of infection. Prolonged sensitivity suggests that the root canal treatment may not have been entirely successful in removing the infection.

Bad Breath and Taste

An unpleasant odor or taste in your mouth, particularly around the treated tooth, can be indicative of an infection. Bacteria may have re-entered the tooth, causing an unpleasant odor and taste. This is a sign that your dentist needs to reevaluate the tooth and take appropriate action.

Discharge or Pus

The presence of any discharge, pus, or abscess near the treated tooth is a clear sign of infection. You may notice a  bump on the gum or a foul-tasting discharge. These are serious indications that the infection has not been adequately treated and requires immediate attention.

Fever and General Malaise

In more severe cases of infection, you may experience systemic symptoms such as fever, fatigue, or a general feeling of being unwell. If you develop a fever after your root canal or experience an overall decline in your health, it could be a sign that the infection has spread beyond the tooth.


While root canals are generally successful at treating tooth infections, there is always a slight risk of complications. It’s crucial to pay attention to your body and any unusual symptoms following the procedure. If you notice any of the six signs mentioned in this blog post, contact your dentist promptly.

Early detection and treatment of post-root canal infections are crucial for preventing further complications and ensuring your dental health. Regular follow-up appointments with your dentist are also essential to monitor the healing process and address any potential issues promptly. Your oral health is worth it, so don’t hesitate to seek help if you suspect an infection after a root canal.

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