Root Canal Hurts to Chew

Root Canal Hurts to Chew

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Experiencing discomfort while chewing after a root canal procedure can be concerning. Understanding the causes of this pain and knowing what steps to take will help you manage the situation successfully. We are committed to offering you a wide range of solutions and information to guarantee dental health at Sunshine Dentistry in Richmond Hill, Ontario.

What is a Root Canal Procedure?

A root canal procedure, a dental treatment that removes infection from a tooth’s pulp and protects it from future infections, is a crucial aspect to understand. This procedure involves the removal of the infected or inflamed pulp, cleaning and disinfection of the tooth’s interior, and the subsequent filling and sealing of the tooth. The primary goal is to save the tooth while alleviating the pain caused by infection.

Why Does It Hurt to Chew After a Root Canal Procedure?

Feeling slightly uncomfortable following a root canal treatment is expected, mainly when chewing. Several causes contribute to this pain:

  1. Inflammation and Healing: The operation itself may cause inflammation of the tissues around the treated tooth. Pressure, such as during chewing, can induce sensitivity and irritation due to this inflammation. It is a normal part of the healing process that usually goes away within a few days to a week.
  2. Temporary Filling or Crown: Dentists usually use a temporary filling or crown to protect the tooth until a permanent restoration is made. These temporary solutions may not be aligned with your bite, resulting in discomfort during chewing. Following up with your dentist to get the permanent restoration done is essential.
  3. Residual Infection: In some instances, continued pain may result from the initial root canal procedure failing to eradicate the infection. A follow-up visit to your dentist is crucial to address any lingering issues.

Managing Pain After a Root Canal Procedure

While you can expect some discomfort, there are various steps you may take to reduce pain and enhance healing following a root canal operation.

Over-the-Counter Pain Relief

Non-prescription pain medications, such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen, can help manage discomfort and inflammation. Always adhere to the dosage instructions specified on the medication label or by your dentist.

Avoid Hard or Chewy Foods

Stick to soft foods and avoid anything that requires excessive chewing. This alleviates discomfort and reduces the pressure on the treated tooth.

Why Does It Hurt to Chew After a Root Canal Procedure?

Maintain Good Oral Hygiene

Continuing to brush and floss as usual, but being cautious around the treated area is paramount. Maintaining good oral hygiene is a critical preventive measure to avoid infection and promote healing, preventing future dental issues.

Follow Up with Your Dentist

Regular follow-up appointments with your dentist are essential to monitor the healing process. If the pain persists or worsens, rest assured that your dentist at Sunshine Dentistry will thoroughly analyze the situation and, if necessary, provide additional treatment.

When to Seek Immediate Help

Although it is expected to experience mild discomfort, specific symptoms may suggest that immediate dental care is necessary. If you have these symptoms, contact your dentist.

  • Severe pain that doesn’t improve with over-the-counter medications
  • Swelling around the treated tooth or in your face
  • Signs of infection, such as fever or discharge from the treated area
  • A broken or lost temporary filling or crown

Preventing Future Root Canal Issues

Taking care of your teeth and gums can help you avoid the need for future root canal treatments. Here are some guidelines for maintaining optimal dental health:

  1. Regular Dental Check-Ups: Visit Sunshine Dentistry for regular check-ups and cleanings. Regular checkups help your dentist identify and treat problems before they become serious.
  2. Good Oral Hygiene Practices: Brush your teeth twice daily with fluoride toothpaste and floss daily. Proper oral hygiene can help prevent tooth decay and gum disease, lowering the risk of needing a root canal.
  3. Healthy Diet: Limit your sugary and acidic food intake, which can contribute to tooth decay. A well-balanced diet high in fruits, vegetables, and calcium will help strengthen your teeth and gums.


Yes, mild chewing discomfort is common after a root canal procedure and typically subsides within a week.

If the pain persists beyond a week, contact your dentist for a follow-up appointment to assess and address any issues.

Yes, a root canal can occasionally fail if the infection persists. A follow-up visit to your dentist is necessary for further evaluation and treatment.

Experiencing pain while chewing after a root canal procedure is not uncommon, but you should not ignore it. You can guarantee a seamless recovery by understanding the underlying causes of the discomfort and taking the appropriate steps to alleviate it. Sunshine Dentistry in Richmond Hill, Ontario, is here to provide you with the best dental care and guidance possible. If you have any concerns or experience persistent pain, please get in touch with us for a consultation.

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