When the pulp inside the tooth becomes inflamed or infected, a dentist must perform a root canal treatment to save it. Since you are given anesthesia, this common procedure is often no more painful than getting a cavity filled. However, the aftercare steps are a little more complicated because the treatment is more intensive. Here, the team at The Healthy Smile Center of Ashtabula, OH, explains what you should do after undergoing this procedure.
How to Take Care of Yourself After a Root Canal Treatment
1. Avoid Eating Until Anesthetic Wears Off
Before the root canal procedure, the dentist will apply a local anesthetic to numb the area they plan to drill. The numbness usually lasts for a few hours after the treatment, which can make it difficult to chew comfortably and gauge the temperature of foods. Wait until the anesthesia wears off completely before eating to avoid choking and burns.
2. Take Medication as Prescribed
Many people experience some pain for the first few days after a root canal treatment, so dentists often recommend a prescription or over-the-counter medication. If the tooth was severely infected, they might also prescribe an antibiotic to protect the rest of the mouth. Take these medications as instructed for the best results.
3. Avoid Hard or Sticky Foods
After the root canal treatment, the dentist protects the tooth with a temporary crown until a permanent one can be placed. Since the first covering is only meant to last for a short period, it’s your responsibility to take care of it. When you are able to eat, avoid any hard or sticky foods that can cause it to break or fall off. Stay away from candy and gum as well as meat that is on a bone or popcorn with tough kernels.
If you are experiencing severe pain due to an infection, then let the dentists at The Healthy Smile Center perform a root canal treatment. They’ll provide the care you need to recover from the infection and protect the surrounding teeth. They offer a wide range of general and cosmetic dentistry services, from routine cleanings to teeth whitening and even emergency care. Call (440) 992-2700 to schedule an appointment, and visit their website to learn more about their treatment options.