Taking Care Of Yourself After A Root Canal

After your root canal, you'll naturally feel some pain and numbness in the affected area. These tips and coping strategies will help you alleviate your discomfort and keep your mouth clean, speeding the healing process after your root canal. 

Eat Carefully During and After the Procedure

Your dentist may begin your root canal procedure by installing a temporary filling in your tooth, and then putting the permanent filling in a week later. After the temporary filling is installed, before the permanent filling has been put in, avoid biting down on the affected area. Chew on the opposite side of your mouth. Avoid eating sticky foods or chewing gum. 

After the permanent filling has been put in, your mouth will feel numb. This can make it difficult to eat safely. Wait for the numbness to wear off before attempting to eat, to avoid biting your own tongue or the inside of your cheek. 

Take Prescribed or Over the Counter Medications

If your dentist prescribed medications after your root canal, take the full course of medicine. Do not stop taking medicines until they're all gone, even if you're not experiencing any more pain. If your dentist did not prescribe any specific medications after your root canal, take over the counter medications like ibuprofen, in the manufacturer's recommended doses. 

Follow These Tips to Relieve Your Pain

Rinse your mouth with salt water to help relieve your pain. You may do this multiple times per day, and mix the salt water yourself to whatever saltiness that you find to be acceptable. An ice pack may help reduce your pain and swelling. Apply ice to the side of your face for no more than 15 minutes at a time. Although you may use an ice pack designated for medical purposes, a bag of frozen peas or a frozen washcloth will work as well. Do not apply heat to your face, as this can cause swelling to increase. 

Follow Standard Care Procedures Before, During and After the Root Canal

Brush and floss your tooth as often as you normally do before and after the root canal takes place. When flossing around a tooth with a temporary filling, be careful not to loosen the temporary filling. Handle the floss gently and remove floss from between your teeth slowly and carefully. 

Following these tips will minimize the effects of your root canal and help you get back on your feet after your procedure. For more help and advice, speak with your dentist before beginning the root canal procedure.