Make your root canal go smoothly from beginning to end.
Root canals may have been excruciatingly painful once, but today they’re quick and relatively painless procedures. In fact, most of the discomfort you’ll experience from your root canal will occur in the days following the treatment.
Today, we’ll show you the things that you should do during your root canal recovery to prevent infection and reduce pain.
Caring for yourself after a root canal
Brush and Floss Regularly
After a root treatment, keeping your mouth clean is essential for your tooth to heal quickly and fight off bacteria. The chances of contracting an infection increase significantly if the right oral care regimen isn’t followed. Although it should already be a habit, brushing and flossing your teeth twice a day is essential during your root canal recover.
Pick the Right Diet
It’s common for sensitivity to persist a few days after a root canal. Because hard foods can harm the progress made by the procedure (and cause unnecessary discomfort) it’s best to eat foods like fruit smoothies, soups, and mashed potatoes. You should also make a point to avoid chewy food (like bread or meats) as they could cause the temporary filling to come out prematurely.
Even when you’re observing the recommended root canal post-op diet, it’s important to chew your food carefully. Chewing too hard on the treated tooth can cause significant discomfort and possibly damage the temporary filling; instead, avoid chewing on the side of your mouth that hasn’t been operated on.
Watch for Infections
Even when a treated tooth is properly cared for, it’s possible that a minor infection could sprout. After your procedure, keep an eye on the area that was treated to monitor any signs of infection such as gums that have changed color or visible swelling. Anyone in an unusual amount of pain after their procedure should call their dentist to discuss their symptoms.
Take Time to Heal
A root canal won’t hinder you from day-to-day activities, but you should give yourself time after the procedure to relax and heal. Keep in mind that your tooth will be sensitive for a few days after the treatment, and that it can take anywhere from 2-3 days to completely heal. Anyone with minor discomfort after a root canal should take Motrin or Advil.
Root canal recoveries usually only take one to two days, and most people return to work the day after their procedure. Sensitivity may persist for two to three days, however it’s unusual for patients to experience any severe pain while healing. Take care of yourself after the treatment by brushing and flossing regularly to prevent infection, avoid eating hard or chewy foods, and watch for infections -even if you’ve followed your post-op instructions perfectly.
If you’re considering a root canal, call our office today at (540) 967-5800 to schedule a consultation.