How Long Does a Root Canal Last?

Do you want to know how long a root canal lasts? Well, we’ve got you covered because in this article I’m gonna answer all the queries you’re having regarding root canal & how long it will last? So if interested, Scroll down for further info!

How Long Does a Root Canal Last

What Is Root Canal Treatment?

Root canal treatment is an effective method offered by dentists to relieve pain caused by an infected tooth & to save your natural tooth.

During this process the abscessed pulp is removed, the surfaces within the tooth are meant to be cleaned from germs & bacteria to disinfect & a filling is placed to cover the gap or space that occurred during the infection.

Root canal treatment becomes compulsory when you don’t pay enough attention to your tooth cavity or it has been left untreated for a long time, which as a result can infect your tooth & cause pain. It also sometimes occurs if your tooth becomes broken or damaged due to any injury.

So to overcome this problem dentists usually recommend root canal therapy to treat your tooth & prevent it from re-infection as millions of teeth are saved & treated each year through this way to relieve pain & make your teeth healthy again.

Symptoms of Root Canal:

In most cases, people are unaware that they have an infected tooth or commonly they don’t pay enough attention. However, some people do notice certain symptoms that show you need a root canal treatment like Gum swelling & pain are the most common symptoms of an infected tooth. If this swelling lasts for a longer period of time or your tooth looks a bit larger than the other teeth, it means that you’re having an inflammatory tooth & you need root canal therapy.

Signs for a root canal are:

Severe Toothache Sensitivity to heat & cold
Gum Swelling Bone loss
Dental Abscess Tooth Discoloration
Bad Breath Pus Issue
Appearance of Pimple or Boils near the Tip of Tooth Cracked or Damaged tooth due to injury
Swollen Jaw Pain while Eating or Chewing Food
Loose Tooth due to pus Unpleasant Taste & Smell.

1. Gum Swelling:

Gum swelling is another symptom of tooth infection. This happens when your tooth is infected, a pus occurs inside the infected tooth & results in gum selling, redness & severe pain.

2. Sensitivity to cold & hot things:

If you feel pain in your tooth while drinking a hot/cold coffee or tea or eating ice- cream especially if you feel pain for more than a few seconds or hours, it truly shows that you need a root canal treatment otherwise it’ll get worse with time.

3. The appearance of Pimple or Boils:

When your tooth seems to be infected, a pimple or boil may develop near the tip of the tooth or on the gum. This pimple leads to the occurrence of pus inside the tooth which as a result causes drainage of pus & produces an unpleasant smell & taste in your mouth leading to bad breath.

4. Pain during Eating or Chewing:

Another important symptom of tooth infection is having pain at the time of eating food. If your tooth hurts while munching or chewing food, this shows that your tooth is having a severe infection & you should definitely go for root canal treatment.

5. Discoloration of Tooth:

An infected tooth also leads to discoloration of your tooth & this is because of a shortage of blood supply to the tooth. When the pulp of your tooth becomes infected it pauses the supply of blood to the tooth & can cause a darker tooth in return.

6. A Cracked or Damaged Tooth:

If you’ve broken or damaged your tooth due to any injury or accident like playing sports or falling on something rigid, bacteria or germs can easily & completely reach your tooth pulp & can cause tooth infection.

7. Bone Loss:

If an infected tooth will not be treated properly on time it can lead to bone loss which means that you’re going to lose your natural tooth forever & can also cause damage to other teeth as well which is not a good thing according to studies.

How Root Canal is Performed:

Before beginning this procedure, your dentist will take dental x-rays of the infected tooth to find out the extent of harm & to confirm that root canal treatment is the only suitable method to recover your tooth. This procedure can be simply done in one or two appointments. Here are some steps that will perform during this procedure:

· At first, after an exam & some x-rays anesthesia is given to numb the inflamed tooth or gums then you won’t feel anything or pain during treatment. Sometimes some ■■■■ sedatives are also given especially to those who suffer from dental anxiety.

· Then after that rubber dam is placed by the dentists over the area which is definitely for your protection & helps to keep your tooth separate & dry during this process.

· Now after placing the rubber, a small opening is made through the crown of the tooth & into the pulp chamber. Some small files will be used to remove the decay, infection, nerves, blood vessels & tissues inside of the tooth.

· A fluid is put inside the canals to kill germs or bacteria & helps to rinse out the debris from the tooth. Then the endodontist carefully cleans & shapes the canals.

· After the space is cleaned & finally shaped, a rubber material called gutta-percha will be placed to seal the tooth from the tip of the root to about halfway up.

· A dental filling will be placed to seal & prevent the tooth from re-entering germs & bacteria.

· Then a dental crown is placed on the back of the root canal tooth. A crown is basically made up of metal or porcelain & necessarily acts to strengthen your tooth.

How Long Does a Root Canal Last:

Well according to studies, it depends on whether the root canal procedure was well-performed or not because a properly done root canal can last a lifetime without causing any problem or pain.

However, many studies show a very high success rate of root canals over 80-90% lasting more than 30 years. Only in a few cases, (roughly 4-5%) does root canal treatment fail & need to be redone again & It generally happens due to poorly performed root canal treatment.

If treatment is poorly performed, there are chances of reappearance of the symptoms like pain, functional problems or fracture, etc… again.

Many times people have a root canal done & they don’t need to pay furthermore for the treatment because their treatment has been done perfectly & the tooth won’t hurt anymore & they don’t need to get it restored in the future.

So in order to prevent these problems & to keep your root-canaled tooth in a good & healthy condition, you should keep your mouth clean & often visit your dentist for regular checkups to identify & prevent further problems if they should arise in the future.

Is Root Canal Painful?

A simple answer to this question is that root canal treatment is not any more painful now & thanks to the modern techniques & materials dentists are using now.

Root canal treatment might have been quite a painful treatment in the past, but now root canals are usually painless because dentists or endodontists use local anesthesia to numb the infected tooth & surrounding gums before starting the procedure.

Many people avoid root canal treatment from the fear of pain which makes their condition worsen & worsen. So you shouldn’t avoid root canal treatment because of the fear as now dentists use local anesthesia or local sedatives to avoid even the slightest chances of pain.

But in case you feel any pain during the treatment, you should probably point it out to your dentist so then your provider will try to take measures to stop your pain.

However, you can expect mild pain, discomfort, or sensitivity after the treatment for the first few days but can be dealt with easily by taking some strongest toothache medicine such as Ibuprofen or acetaminophen.

If you feel more pain, you can consult your dentist to recommend some pain killers to avoid post root canal pain. You can also try some home remedies to relieve your pain & if all these procedures fail you can again revisit your dentist to suggest stronger painkillers.

It is important to know that you should avoid eating or chewing food with that root-canaled tooth just after the treatment or for a few days.

Can I Eat after RCT:

Well, probably Yes, you can eat but not immediately after the root canal therapy. Dentists usually recommend that patients wait about a few hours before chewing on the side where the root canal was done unless & until your teeth & gums feel no longer numb after the root canal treatment.

This is because sometimes when your gums, teeth, or tongue are somewhat numb, you might be able to bite your tongue or cheeks or can burn your mouth while eating something hot as you’re unable to feel anything after the root canal treatment.

Moreover, it can lead to damage to your temporary filling as well. Dentists put a temporary cap or cover over the root canal tooth after the root canal therapy in order to protect it until the original crown is ready.

So you have the chance of getting root canal damage if you eat immediately after the treatment. Dentists also advised the patients to start with something soft, smooth, or liquidy food for a few days & then slowly lead them towards solid or crunchy food after some days.

Food to Eat after Root Canal Treatment:

As the dentists recommend starting with a soft & moist food to keep your tooth filling protective, here is a long list of moist & soft food you can eat after the root canal treatment.

  1. Banana, mango, or strawberry Milkshake, oats or scrambled eggs for breakfast

  2. Mashed potatoes or mashed cauliflower.

  3. Canned or ripened fruits & smoothies.

  4. Fully cooked veggies, hummus, or lukewarm soup.

  5. Ice cream, sorbet, or frozen yogurt as a dessert

  6. You can also take soft bread or plain cake (without nuts or crunch) with lukewarm milk.

  7. Pasta, yogurt, quinoa, or noodles.

  8. Tuna salad or sushi.

  9. Rice pudding, applesauce, peanut butter, or flan.

  10. Rice, banana, or soft cheese.

Foods to Avoid after RCT:

The food you need to avoid eating after the root canal therapy at least for a week or until your dentist recommends you to eat are:

· Avoid eating solid or crunchy food such as nuts, seeds, cereals, or muesli as they can lead to fracture or damage your tooth after the root canal treatment because your root-canaled tooth becomes sensitive for a while after this procedure.

· You should avoid the intake of hot & spicy food as well like: meat, soup, spicy broths, gravy food & so on, as they can cause discomfort & sensitivity.

· Don’t drink hot tea or coffee immediately or within 48 hours after the root canal treatment.

· Avoid sticky or chewy food such as candies, toffee, gums, or caramels.

· Avoid drinking alcohol as it leads to bleeding.

· Also avoid smoking as it interferes with healing & can increase the chances of more problems in the future.

Precautions to take after Root Canal Therapy:

After this root canal therapy, it’s very important to take precautions in order to protect your tooth from further damage.

To maintain good ■■■■ hygiene, It is necessary to keep your area clean. You should continue flossing & brushing your teeth & it should be done carefully near the treated area.

Try to rinse your mouth with warm salt water or an antibacterial mouthwash to inhibit dental bacteria & germs & also promotes healing. You should have to avoid chewing food, especially on the treated area to prevent fractures.

Remember to take medications on time as prescribed by the dentist, especially if antibiotics are recommended to you by the dentist try to complete the course to avoid complications.


Don’t forget to attend follow-up appointments & regular checkups to prevent arising future problems. Always pay attention to your progress & immediately address any concerns.

What if Root Canal Fails:

Usually, it is seen that root canal treatments are overall successful. Only in just a few cases does root canal therapy fails & needs to be redone again. There can be a few reasons for your root canal failure according to the American Association of Endodontists such as undetected canal branches, cracked roots, or any hurdle at the time of therapy that makes it impossible to clean the tooth or area properly.

It can also happen if your tooth is too much destroyed for this treatment. If you still feel symptoms after the root canal treatment like pain, tooth discoloration, pus drainage, swollen gums, any discomfort, etc.

It means you’re having a failed root canal & your tooth needs re-treatment. In most cases, bacteria wasn’t completely removed which gives it a chance to grow & infect the tooth once again.


If the treatment will not be able to perform on time it can become more critical for the patient & can spread the infection to other teeth or can lead to illness. So to overcome this issue, treatment can be performed again where the tip of the root is surgically removed & the roots are refilled again with the new material.

Advantages of Root Canal Therapy:

Root canal treatment can provide you with lots of benefits after this procedure is completed which are as follows.

· Toothache from severe dental decay can be quite acute. So when root canal treatment is done, the severe pain you were continually facing will completely go away & you feel no pain or discomfort.

· As root canal therapy completely removes the army of bacteria which is the actual cause of infection, the spread of germs & infections will be prevented after root canal therapy.

· A root canal treatment prevents your tooth from extraction so then you can enjoy your natural tooth for a lifetime.

· It also protects other teeth from stains & infections.

· As your root-canaled tooth is now saved, there will be no fear of losing it again.

· It also reduces jawbone damage risk.

Side Effects of Root Canal Treatment:

As root canal treatment is a very successful procedure & can provide you with lots of benefits, at the same time root canal therapy can also have a few or more side effects too.

  1. Root canal treatment is a bit expensive, complex & can be a dangerous procedure as compared to other dental treatments & the one who is unable to afford this treatment can avoid it or can consult a dentist for some other treatment.

  2. When root canal treatment is performed your tooth becomes no longer vital but brittle which can be prone to fractures.

  3. Also it is a bit more complicated than having your tooth extracted & can take a few hours or even sometimes require multiple sessions to complete.

  4. As root canal treatment makes your tooth weak, which then requires extra care & precaution while eating food or brushing your teeth.

  5. Also sometimes this procedure becomes not so successful which leads to failure of the root canal & can require further treatment such as apicoectomy (permanent removal of the root).

  6. Root canal therapy also requires regular visits to your dentists after the process.


Root canal treatment is basically done to make your infected tooth safe for a longer period of time & to avoid tooth extraction. Root canal therapy can last for a lifetime if done properly & care for properly. Usually, 9/10 people have a successful root canal therapy each year without any problem. Only in just a few cases does root canal treatment fails & needs to be redone again.


How Long Does a Root Canal Tooth Survive?

It depends on whether the process was successful or not. Generally, 9 out of 10 root-canaled teeth survive for lifetime. It’s important to have a crown ■■■■■■ to the root-canaled tooth after the treatment so then it can last for a longer period of time.

Does a Root canal Treatment kill the Tooth?

Well Yes, according to dentists all the living tissues of the tooth from which it gets nourishment & life had been destroyed & removed at the time of treatment. So that’s why root canal therapy kills the tooth.

Why is Root Canal Therapy better than Tooth Extraction?

Root canal therapy is way better than having a tooth extraction because root canal treatment kills & destroys all the bacteria of your root as bacteria is the main reason for tooth decay. Also, root canal treatment helps to save your original tooth for a longer period.

Is Root Canal Therapy Painful?

No, root canal treatment is no more painful now due to the modern techniques & materials dentists are using now. Before beginning, this procedure dentists usually use local anesthesia to numb your tooth & gums to avoid any pain during the treatment.

Does Root Canal Shorten your Tooth Life?

After the root canal treatment, the tooth becomes a bit weaker as compared to the naturally healthy tooth but can also last for a longer period as well if taken care of properly.

Is Root Canal a Permanent Solution?

Well, root canal treatment can’t be a permanent solution especially if a problem extends toward tooth extraction. Yeah, but it can fix your tooth decay problem & can make your tooth last long for many years.

How many times can a Root Canal be performed on the same Tooth?

Well, a root canal treatment can be performed usually 2 times or more if needed on the same tooth.

How Long Does a Root Canal Last without Crown?

Probably a root canaled tooth can survive without a crown for at least six months depending upon the case of each patient. But it can’t be delayed much because after the treatment root-canaled tooth becomes weaker & can have the chances of falling apart so that’s why dentists usually try to put the crown within a month.


Root canal treatment is one of the best treatments among all the dental therapies to cure & save your tooth. If you notice any problem in your tooth it’s very important to consult your dentist immediately after that so then the process can become easier & safe for you & your tooth.

Also Read This:
How much is a crown tooth
How long does it take to fill a cavity
How Long do Crowns Last

1. Introduction
  1. What is Root Canal Treatment
  2. Symptoms
  3. How Root Canal is Performed
  4. How Long Does Root Canal can Extant
  5. Is Root Canal Painful
  6. Can I Eat after RCT
  7. Foods to Avoid
  8. Precautions
  9. What if RCT Fails
  10. Benefits
  11. Downsides
  12. FAQs

According to this report, 98 percent of root canals last one year, 92 percent last five years, and 86 percent last ten years or longer . Molars treated by endodontists had a 10 year survival rate, significantly higher than that of molars treated by general dentists.