For some people, the idea of root canal treatment can be a source of anxiety. Although it is a complicated dental procedure, it should not be feared. Root canal therapy can save a diseased tooth from extraction, stop severe tooth pain and cure an infected tooth. If you are someone that has dental anxiety or are concerned about root canal treatment, understanding the before and after care can help put your mind at ease before your procedure.
Before Your Root Canal
Once a root canal treatment is scheduled, you can rest assured that any pain you may have due to an infected or damaged tooth will soon be over. The dentist may prescribe or suggest medication to help with the pain. There is nothing you need to do to care for your tooth before the procedure; however, you will want to ensure you have everything ready for your visit, including:
- Dental insurance information
- X-rays, if they were taken at a different dental office
- Anxiety medication, if you suffer from anxiety during dental treatments
In most cases, you can eat or drink normally before your appointment. If there are any special instructions, your dentist will let you know when you book your root canal appointment.
After Care for Your Root Canal Treatment
When you go home after your root canal treatment, your tooth and gums may still be numb from the aesthesia. It is important not to try to eat anything while your mouth is still numb to avoid injury. Once the aesthesia wears off, your tooth may be tender and sensitive; this is normal and may persist for a few days after your treatment. Over-the-counter pain medications can help with any discomfort, but if you had severe pain due to an infection or inflammation, the root canal treatment should have relieved that pain.
Many teeth that need root canal treatment also need a dental crown after the procedure. If the dentist has suggested a crown, you may have a temporary crown or filling in place until you can have your permanent dental crown secured on your tooth. Until you get your new crown, your tooth is vulnerable; you should avoid biting on any hard or tough foods until your dental crown is placed.
While most root canal procedures heal within a few days, there is always a small chance of complications. If you experience any pain or pressure that lasts more than a few days or severe discomfort, you should contact our office. Our team will advise you on what you should do and schedule a follow-up appointment if necessary.
There is no reason to fear root canal treatment. At Pearland Family Dentistry, we offer gentle, effective root canal therapy to relieve pain, infection and inflammation in diseased teeth. We accept many dental insurance plans at our office in Houston and have evening appointments available for your convenience. Our caring team of dental professionals will ensure you get the best care, before, during and after your root canal treatment.