Root Canals are a relatively standard dental procedure, with an estimated 15.1 million performed annually in the United States alone. Although a general dentist can perform a root canal, endodontists are trained in advanced procedures to ensure that you feel as little pain and discomfort as possible.
A root canal no longer must be a thing that’s feared or put off—let our staff at Southcenter Endodontics help care for you before and after your root canal procedure.
But First, Remind Me, What is a Root Canal?
When the inner tissue of your tooth, the pulp, gets inflamed or infected, you’ll feel pain and tenderness, meant to signal that something is wrong. If that infection goes on for too long, it can become an abscess, making the corrective procedure a little more complicated. However, if you come in at the first sign of pain, our team can perform a root canal to avoid a potential abscess and take away the tooth pain once and for all!
Five Tips for Caring for Your Root Canal
By following a few simple guidelines once you’ve completed your root canal, you can be back to normal in no time with a pain-free smile, too!
- Take some over-the-counter pain relievers
- Stick to a soft diet
- Practice good oral hygiene
- Exercise caution when biting or chewing
- Contact your endodontist with any complications or concerns
Take Some Over-the-Counter Pain Relievers
Depending on your pain tolerance, it’s common to feel a little bit of pain or discomfort after the numbness from your root canal wears off. We recommend making sure you have some over-the-counter pain relievers at home, should you need them. If you feel like your pain is severe or long-lasting, contact your endodontist so they can take a look and make sure you’re healing correctly from your root canal.
Stick to a Soft Diet
You can and should eat after your root canal but be sure to wait until after your numbness wears off, so you don’t accidentally bite your tongue or lips! Since the final crown is not yet covering your tooth, you’ll need to make sure that you don’t chew on it. Soft foods like mashed potatoes, jello, yogurt, eggs, and pasta are great alternatives to all the hard, crunchy foods that you love, but will also cause pain to the affected tooth. While soup sounds like a great idea, it’s best to avoid hot liquids for the first 24 hours, too!
Practice Good Oral Hygiene
Even though your permanent crown hasn’t been placed until your follow-up visit make sure to brush and floss your teeth twice a day, to keep your mouth clean and avoid infections while you heal.
Exercise Caution When Biting or Chewing
Since the root canal area will likely be sensitive until your permanent crown is in place, you’ll want to make sure you don’t bite down or chew with it. While that may be hard to remember, it’s essential to allow your tooth to heal and be in good health for the upcoming crown placement.
Contact Your Endodontist with Any Complications or Concerns
Your endodontist’s job is to walk alongside you throughout the root canal process, so always feel free to reach out to them with questions or concerns during the recovery process. If you feel like something isn’t right, give them a call!
Here at Southcenter Endodontics, we want to make sure you have the best root canal experience possible, and that includes before, during, and after the procedure. Contact us today to schedule a consultation!