Root Canal Pain: Is It The Same For Kids As Adults?


One of the most common questions we get asked by parents is whether or not their child will experience the same amount of pain during a root canal as an adult. The short answer is no. While both procedures are similar, there are a few key differences that make a root canal for kids much less painful than one for adults. 

What Is A Root Canal?

A root canal is a dental procedure in which the nerve and pulp of a tooth are removed and the inside of the tooth is cleaned and sealed. This procedure is usually needed when the nerve or pulp becomes infected or damaged.

What Causes Root Canal Pain?

When a tooth is infected, the root canal becomes inflamed. This can cause a great deal of pain. The pain may radiate from the tooth to the jaw, ear, or head. It may also be accompanied by a headache or fever. In some cases, the pain may be so severe that it interferes with sleep.

Is Root Canal Pain The Same For Kids As Adults?

Since everyone perceives pain differently, there is no definite solution to this topic. However, from what we do know, it seems that children generally have a higher tolerance for pain than adults. This means that they may be less likely to experience pain during or after a root canal procedure.

that said, every individual is different and some children may still experience discomfort during or after the treatment. If your child does experience pain, there are several options for managing it. Your child’s dentist can discuss these options with you and help you choose the best course of action for your child.

How Can You Ease Root Canal Pain?

There are a few things you can do to ease root canal pain in both kids and adults. Ibuprofen or acetaminophen, which are available without a prescription, can be helpful. Additionally, to relieve the discomfort, apply a cold compress to the outside of your cheek. If the pain is really severe, your dentist may prescribe a stronger pain medication. In most cases, root canal pain goes away within a few days after the procedure is complete.

Root canal pain for kids
Root canal pain for kids

When To See A Dentist For Root Canal Pain

It’s important to see a dentist as soon as possible if you’re experiencing root canal pain. This is because the pain is often a sign of an infection in the tooth. If left untreated, the infection can spread to other teeth and even to the jawbone. In some cases, the infection can lead to serious health problems.

If you have a dental appointment scheduled, your dentist will likely take x-rays to check for an infection. They may also ask about your medical history and whether you’ve been experiencing any other symptoms, such as fever or swelling in the gums. Treatment for an infected tooth may include a root canal procedure or antibiotics.


Root canal pain can be different for kids and adults, but it’s important to know that both groups can experience severe pain if the procedure is not done properly. If you or your child is scheduled for a root canal, be sure to ask the dentist about what you can expect in terms of pain during and after the procedure. With the proper preparation and care, you can help ensure that the root canal experience is as smooth and pain-free as possible.

How Long Does Pain After A Root Canal Last?

Mild discomfort might follow a successful root canal for a few days. As long as you maintain appropriate dental hygiene, this is only a transitory condition that should go away on its own. After three days, if the soreness is still there, schedule a follow-up visit with your dentist.

What Does Root Canal Pain Feel Like?

A root canal may be necessary if you are experiencing throbbing pain from an infection in the tooth root.

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