After-Care For Root Canals

If you've had root canal treatment, you're probably relieved that the problem and pain has now been remedied. Most patients in need of a root canal are suffering from an abscess tooth or other serious dental infection. After the root canal has been performed, there are some things you should be aware of to help ensure your healing goes smoothly.

What to Expect Afterwards

Since a root canal is a rather intensive form of dental surgery, you can expect to feel some tenderness at the site where the root canal was performed. You may also notice a bit of soreness in your jaw from holding your mouth open for such a long period of time. Both of these symptoms are mild and should not last very long. Any pain can be treated easily with over-the-counter medication such as ibuprofen, and pain should not last more than a few days. If you feel the pain is too much or is lasting too long, contact your dentist immediately.

Do's and Don'ts

After your root canal, there are some things you should and should not do.

  • DO: Keep the area of your mouth clean by regularly using mouthwash and gently brushing it with a soft head toothbrush.
  • DO: Pay special attention to the temporary filling your dentist has placed before you go back to receive a crown. They can come loose in some cases, and if it does, let your dentist know so they can replace it.
  • DO NOT: Chew or bite down hard in the area where the root canal was. This can cause pain and swelling.
  • DO: Contact your dentist if you feel swelling, pain, numbness, or you have any allergic reactions to medication you've been given.
  • DO NOT: Chew gum for at least one week after the root canal to allow it time to heal without irritation.

What's Next?

After your root canal, your dentist will want you to return in order to have a crown put onto the tooth. The crown is specially designed to help protect the tooth from further damage. Depending on how long it takes you to fully heal, your dentist, one like Family Dentistry Of Woodstock, will probably have you come in for the final step within a couple of weeks after the root canal has been performed. They will get an impression of your tooth and send the information off to a lab where technicians will make the crown specific to your own tooth. Then, you'll return one more time to have the crown placed onto your tooth.