After root canal therapy, our team will send you home with detailed instructions about how to care for your teeth and manage any pain until your follow-up appointment. But if you want to be as prepared as possible, check out these five tips for a heads-up!
- Go Grocery Shopping Beforehand
- Reduce Swelling
- Take It Easy
- Keep Your Mouth Clean
- Call Us with Any Concerns
Go grocery shopping at least a day or two prior to your root canal appointment. Your mouth will be tender and painful for the first 24 hours so you’ll want to eat soft foods that are nutrient-dense. This will aid in your recovery and make eating more pleasant. Many patients find the following satisfying and fairly easy to eat: mashed sweet potatoes, yogurt, oatmeal, cream of wheat, mashed bananas, macaroni and cheese, pureed soup (not too hot), scrambled eggs and avocado, and smoothies (but no straws).
You might experience swelling for the first 72 hours. Place a cold compress on the outside of your cheek for 20 minutes, then at least 20 minutes off, repeating several times a day. Additionally, rest and sleep elevated with an extra pillow; take a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory like ibuprofen; and avoid smoking, drinking alcohol, using straws, sucking on lollipops, and slurping.
Rest, drink plenty of water, and avoid strenuous physical activity for at least 48 hours. This includes vigorous exercise, playing sports, heavy lifting, bending over, and physical labor. Depending on your pain and tenderness, you may even want to limit the amount you talk.
Daily oral hygiene will help your mouth heal after your procedure. Gently rinse your mouth after eating, brush twice a day for two minutes each time (avoiding the treated area for several days), and floss every day. Beginning 24-48 hours after your procedure, gently rinse your mouth with a mixture of warm water and table salt several times a day.
It’s important to take any prescribed antibiotics for their entire course and to watch out for any abnormalities after root canal therapy. Let us know ASAP if you experience profuse bleeding, worsening pain, swelling that persists or increases after several days, or problems similar to before root canal therapy.