Root canals may sound like they are a scary procedure, but with a good understanding of what to expect from the recovery process, you will come out of your root canal the knowledge you need to maintain a healthy smile.
If you have had a root canal scheduled, there is a pretty good chance that you are preparing yourself for what you can expect during the procedure. However, it's also important that you understand what to expect after the procedure too so you can heal without complications.
Root Canal Recovery Process
Your dentist will work with you to provide preventive care and maintenance so your teeth can remain healthy and strong.
Despite our best efforts, however, many people may still need root canal procedures if their toot roots are damaged too much to be corrected with other treatment options. Avoiding root canals in the first place is always ideal, but if one becomes necessary, prepare yourself with the information you need to be prepared for the procedure and recovery process.
What to Expect with Recovery
Your dentist will explain what you should expect before your procedure. You may be able to anticipate feeling some soreness over the days following your root canal, especially as the local anesthetic your dentist applied begins to wear off.
Typically, there will be some discomfort at the site of the root canal, as well as general jaw soreness as a result of having your mouth open for the duration of the procedure.
If you've been provided with pain medication, it may help prevent discomfort while you heal.
While a small amount of pain is normal following a root canal, it's important that your monitor your mouth for any changes and see your dentist immediately if you are experiencing any of the following symptoms. If it's outside of regular business hours or you are unable to get in for an appointment, you should visit an emergency department of your hospital.
The sooner you seek help, the better the chances are that we can resolve the issue and reduce any pain you are feeling before your condition worsens.
Signs & Symptoms
- Moderate-to-severe pain
- Persistent or visible swelling (2+ days)
- Pain medication isn't working
- Losing the temporary crown/filling
- Pain or pressure lasting more than a few days
- Rashes, hives, or other allergic reactions to the medication
For a Quicker Recovery
Recovery time from root canals will vary from person to person, but you should be able to expect that most of the pain you were feeling before your treatment will begin to fade after your procedure. Within 7 days of your procedure, your mouth should have reduced swelling and significantly reduced pain.
To help expedite the recovery process (and prevent secondary issues from happening), you can ensure the best care for your mouth, post-procedure, by following these suggestions.
- Choose foods that won't require a lot of chewing
- Take a break from exercising for a few days
- Ensure regular brushing and flossing, as normal
- Monitor your health and any changes
- Get enough rest and sleep to help recovery
- Avoid chewing on the tooth until after the permanent crown or filling is placed