After your procedure, Dr. Benjamin and his staff will send you home with instructions for pain management and how to care for your tooth while recovering from treatment and until a follow-up visit. Following these guidelines for care is especially important if a temporary filling or crown is in place.
- As the anesthetic used to numb your mouth during your procedure wears off, you may feel some tenderness in the area for a few days. This discomfort can be due to several different factors, but know that this is normal and expected while everything heals.
- These temporary symptoms usually respond well to over-the-counter medication.
- Although rare, Dr. Benjamin may prescribe a narcotic medication after treatment. If he has prescribed you a narcotic medication, it is important to carefully follow the instructions for their use. Narcotics can make you drowsy so you should exercise caution when taking them. You should avoid driving a car or operating dangerous machinery while taking narcotic medicaitons.
Though you may experience a slightly different sensation from your treated tooth than your other teeth for some time, you should contact Dr. Benjamin immediately if you experience any of the following symptoms:
- Severe pain or pressure lasting more than a few days
- Visible swelling inside or outside your mouth
- An allergic reaction to medication (rash, hives or itching)
- Your bite feels uneven
- The temporary crown or filling, if one was put in place, comes out (losing a thin layer is normal)
- Prolonged numbness in the area
- Symptoms you experienced prior to treatment return
After your procedure wait until the numbness in your mouth wears off before eating in an attempt to prevent biting your cheek or tongue.
Root canals give you the ability to retain your own tooth. But they are not perfect. One of the down sides to a root canal is that a root canal treated tooth is considered more fragile and prone to cracking. This is especially true with your back teeth (Molars and Premolars). It is because of this that many teeth that require a root canal will also require further restorative work by your restorative dentist. This usually will mean a cuspal coverage restoration better known as a crown.
Do not chew or bite down on the treated tooth until it is fully restored by your dentist. Remember to brush and floss daily as you normally would to keep the area clean and avoid infection.
Once your root canal and any follow-up appointments are completed, you will need to return to your dentist for a final crown to fully restore the tooth. It is important to make this appointment as soon as your endodontist completes work on your tooth. A properly treated and restored tooth can last as long as your natural teeth.
Take care of your teeth by brushing, flossing, regular checkups, and cleanings and be sure to return to your dentist and/or Dr. Benjamin if you experience pain or swelling in the future.
Even though root canal treatments carry a high success rate, they are not perfect. It is possible for a properly treated tooth to require additional treatment years after the initial procedure. Very often if/when this occurs, the tooth can be retreated to continue to allow you to keep your tooth.