Can Root Canals Cause A Sinus Infection?

Can Root Canals Cause A Sinus Infection? What You Should Know 

If you’ve recently had root canal therapy in Woburn and you’re starting to feel the symptoms of a sinus infection (sinusitis), you may be wondering if these things are related. Is it possible for a root canal to cause a sinus infection?

The short answer is “no,” but there are a few catches and complexities when it comes to this subject. So read on, and learn all about it from the team at Woburn Dental Associates. 

Infected Teeth, Not Root Canals, Cause Sinus Infections

As mentioned, root canals are not the cause of sinus infections. So why would you get a sinus infection after you get root canal therapy?

Well, the chances are that if this happens to you, it’s not because of the root canal, but due to the tooth infection that has required you to get treatment with a root canal. Root canals don’t cause sinusitis, but tooth infections do.

Why? It comes down to the anatomy of the mouth. Your upper teeth, and the upper molars in particular, have deep roots that reach into your jaw bone. They actually are located very close to the sinus lining. 

So if your tooth becomes infected and the roots of the teeth are full of bacteria, this bacteria can easily spread through the tooth into the maxillary sinuses, which are located right above the teeth. 

This, in turn, causes a sinus infection. This is common enough that there’s a medical term for it, and it’s a mouthful. It’s called “Maxillary Sinusitis Of Endodontic Origin,” or MSEO for short. 

So if you have a sinus infection after a root canal, chances are that it wasn’t caused by the root canal at all, but it’s a holdover from the infection that was present in your tooth. Once the infection is removed, MSEO will not occur. 

Sinusitis-Like Symptoms After A Root Canal Could Be A “Sinus Communication”

There’s another complication on the subject of root canals and sinusitis. Some patients may experience symptoms of a sinus infection after their root canal and think that these symptoms are caused by sinusitis.

But the issue may be due to a “sinus communication.” This means a small opening in the sinus lining. As we touched upon earlier, the sinus lining is really close to the roots of the teeth. When your dentist cleans out damaged pulp during a root canal, it’s possible for them to puncture the sinus lining.

This may lead to symptoms like sinus pressure and pain, post-nasal drip, and other symptoms similar to sinusitis. The good news is that sinus communication heals within a few weeks in most cases, and rarely requires any additional surgical intervention.

Get Expert Care For Infected Teeth From Woburn Dental Associates

Our dental team has years of experience in endodontics. We can take steps to prevent sinus infections due to infected teeth, and ensure your tooth is restored, repaired, and preserved for years to come. If you need a root canal in Woburn, don’t wait. Contact Woburn Dental Associates online or call us at (781) 933-0422 to schedule a consultation immediately.

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