Untreated Root Canal Symptoms

When a dental infection is left untreated, it can escalate into a serious condition requiring a root canal procedure. Symptoms like deep tooth pain, pressure sensitivity, or pain in the jaw are very common. Untreated root canals may lead to more than just persistent discomfort; ignoring these symptoms can result in the spread of infection to other teeth as well.

Damaged teeth

You should be aware of several key symptoms that could indicate an untreated root canal infection

  • Severe toothache: Pain is most noticeable when biting down or applying pressure to the tooth.
  • Persistent sensitivity: Tooth Sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures can be because of nerve damage or infection.
  • Gum swelling and tenderness: Look for inflammation in the gums surrounding the affected tooth.
  • Discoloration: A tooth that has become darker can be a sign of underlying issues.
  • Pimple-on gums: Known as a dental abscess, this can form on the gums near the infected tooth.

key takeaways

  • Persistent symptoms can signal the need for a root canal.
  • Delaying treatment can result in damaging other teeth as well.
  • Consultation with a dental professional is critical for timely treatment.

Complications and Risks

Ignoring these symptoms can result in several complications:

  • Spread of infection: The bacteria from the infection can move beyond the tooth to other parts of the mouth.
  • Bone loss: The infection may lead to the deterioration of bone around the tooth.
  • Dental cysts: Cysts may form at the root tip, potentially causing further damage if not treated.

How long can a root canal go untreated?

When you’re facing a root canal issue, the timing of your treatment is essential to prevent further complications. The stage of the infection and the presence of symptoms dictate how urgently you need to undergo the procedure.

Immediate Treatment Necessity

If you’re experiencing severe pain, swelling, or signs of an abscess, such as pus discharge, you shouldn’t wait to seek treatment. An emergency root canal can alleviate your pain and address the infection.

Antibiotics: They may provide temporary relief but are not a replacement for the cleaning involved in a root canal. Delays in the procedure can worsen the situation and damage the surrounding teeth as well 

Untreated root canal pain

Delaying a root canal can lead to undesirable outcomes such as:

  • Infection Spread: Without timely treatment, the infection can spread to adjacent teeth, and soft tissues.Which can cause damage to adjacent teeth as well
  • Tooth Loss: Chronic infection can compromise the structural integrity of the tooth, potentially leading to extraction.
  • Increased Complexity: The longer you wait, the more complex and costly the procedure may become due to additional damage.

How long will antibiotics delay a root canal?

When considering the use of antibiotics for a root canal infection, it is important to understand that they do not replace the need for a root canal procedure. Antibiotics may be prescribed before a root canal to reduce swelling and control the infection, making the procedure safer and less painful.

  • Typical Duration: Antibiotics are often prescribed for about 7 to 10 days. However, the timing of the root canal procedure following antibiotic treatment can vary based on the severity of the infection.
  • Healing Period Influence: After antibiotics, the healing period might be prolonged, leading to discomfort. One key factor in this delay is the response of the infection to the medication.

If you’re prescribed antibiotics, it’s crucial to follow the prescribed course and communicate with your dentist about any occurring symptoms. Remember, delaying the root canal procedure for too long could lead to complications or the spread of infection.

Also Read

Highlighting the tooth anatomy

What Causes Root Canal

Root canal procedures alleviate pain caused by tooth pulp inflammation or infection. Common causes include severe decay, repeated dental procedures on the same tooth, cracks, chips, and infection. 

Why Wait Two Weeks After a Root Canal for Crown

Understand the importance of waiting two weeks after a root canal before placing a permanent crown. Premature placement can lead to complications and discomfort

Root Canal Failure Symptoms

Recovering from a root canal typically takes a few days to a week, varying based on procedure complexity and personal health. Following aftercare instructions, managing pain with medication, resting, and sticking to a soft diet aid in smooth recovery.

Root Canal on Wisdom Tooth

When considering a root canal for a wisdom tooth, understanding its necessity and weighing its benefits is crucial. While its less common due to tooth extraction being typically preferred