August 11, 2023
Root canals are one of the most common methods of dealing with a toothache, especially one that has advanced too far to be adequately dealt with by a filling or dental crown. Many people are intimidated by root canals because of a fear of pain, but the truth is that the procedure is completely painless.
Powerful local anesthetics mean that you’ll be comfortable for the duration of the treatment. However, you may still wonder about what aftercare could look like. Here’s what you should know.
Discomfort During Root Canal Aftercare
It’s typical for your tooth to be a little bit sensitive for a few days after the root canal procedure. However, this should be fairly mild—nothing compared to the toothache that likely brought you into the office in the first place. As a consequence, you should be able to get by with just over-the-counter pain relievers, and discomfort should fade quickly after a few days.
What if the Discomfort Doesn’t Fade?
That said, there are some select circumstances where you may find that your sensitivity doesn’t go away when you’d expect it to. If you’re still experiencing pain or swelling, it may be the case that the first root canal wasn’t able to completely remove all of the infected tissue.
If you notice that discomfort gets worse as opposed to better, you should let your dentist know. You may need another round of treatment, or the infection may have spread to another tooth.
How to Make Root Canal Aftercare Comfortable
There are other things you can do beyond just over-the-counter pain relievers to make yourself more comfortable during aftercare. First of all, you may want to try and elevate your head when sleeping, as increased blood flow from lying down may exacerbate swelling.
You should also avoid anything that could put too much pressure on your teeth, like eating hard or sticky foods. And finally, you should try and stay away from nicotine or tobacco products, as these can make recovery much more difficult for you.
About the Author
Dr. Patrick Crowley loves to see people smile, and he feels enormously lucky to be in a field that allows him to help people improve their oral health. He does this by offering his patients the latest techniques in dentistry in an environment that puts patients completely at ease. Dr. Crowley received his dental degree from the University of Oklahoma College of Dentistry. He is a member of both the Oklahoma Dental Association and the Academy of General Dentistry.
If you have any questions about root canals, he can be reached at his website or by phone at (405) 751-5515.
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