When a tooth becomes severely decayed or damaged, the pulp inside it can become infected. This infection can cause immense pain and, if left untreated, can lead to serious health problems. A root canal is a treatment used to remove the infected pulp and save the tooth. 

During a root canal procedure, the dentist will clean out the infected pulp and seal the tooth.

A root canal can become infected if the tooth is not properly cleaned and sealed. The infection can spread to the surrounding tissue and cause an abscess. If you think you may have an infection, it is essential to see your dentist as soon as possible.

How do I Identify My Root Canal Is Infected?

If you’re experiencing pain in your tooth, it could be a sign that the root canal is infected. Other symptoms include:

  • Swelling in your gum 
  • Tenderness in your gum
  • Sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures

What Happens If Your Root Canal Gets Infected?

What Happens If Your Root Canal Gets Infected?

If you have a root canal, it means that the nerve inside your tooth has become infected. This can happen due to a deep cavity or an injury to the tooth. Once the nerve is infected, it needs to be removed to save the tooth. 

The root canal procedure involves drilling into the tooth to remove the infected nerve and then filling and sealing the tooth. However, sometimes, even after having a root canal, the infection can come back. That means the root canal failed.

It’s not a serious matter. When this occurs, you will need to have another root canal procedure or have the tooth extracted.

Can a Tooth With a Root Canal Become Infect?

A tooth infection can be caused by decay, trauma, or other factors. In this treatment, the dentist cleans and seals the teeth. 

A tooth with a root canal can become infected if the sealant breaks down or if bacteria enter the tooth through a crack or hole.

Why Would a Root Canal Get Infected?

A tooth’s root canal becomes infected when bacteria enter and multiply within the tooth. The bacteria may enter the root canal through a crack in the tooth or through the opening where the nerve enters the root. Once inside, they can cause an infection that leads to inflammation and pain. 

A root canal may also become re-infected after it has been treated if bacteria are still present in the tooth or if new bacteria enter through a crack or opening.


A root canal can become infected for several reasons. The most common cause is bacteria that enter the tooth through a crack or cavity. Once the bacteria gets inside, it can multiply and infect the pulp, which is the soft tissue inside the tooth. 

Symptoms of an infected root canal include pain, swelling, and sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures. If left untreated, an infection can spread to other parts of the body and cause serious health problems. Root canal treatment involves removing the infected pulp and cleaning out the inside of the tooth. 

A temporary filling is then placed in the tooth to protect it until a permanent one can be put in place. If your dentist gives the treatment correctly, the teeth will last for your lifetime.

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