Root canal treatment is a dental procedure that involves the cleaning and shaping of the root canal walls. It is performed to relieve the pain and infection associated with a decayed or fractured tooth.
Usually, the patient may experience mild discomfort and pain after a root canal. However, such situations can be avoided by following post-treatment instructions given by the dentist. Furthermore, the root canal aftercare provides better outcomes.
Post-treatment care of a root canal treated tooth is essential to maintain its strength and longevity. Today’s article will highlight the key components that will help you to manage your root canal treated teeth.
After root canal care importance
Root canal treatment is usually performed to treat pulp infections. The routine procedure typically involves cleaning and shaping of the root canals. As this dental procedure affects the tooth structure, post-treatment care becomes an essential part of a successful outcome.
Generally, patients may experience mild pain and discomfort after the treatment, which gradually subsides in a day or two. Once the root canal treatment is complete, the next visit is made to keep track of the procedure. Moreover, the dentist checks for signs of damage to the treated tooth. Follow up appointments are made to place the crown.
Patients who regularly follow the post root canal treatment instructions are ensured of a faster recovery. While the patients who fail to do so lose their root canal treated teeth because of a tooth fracture or split.
What should you do & avoid post root canal treatment?
Here are some of the Dos and Don’ts of root canal aftercare that you must keep in mind –
Instructions that you must follow post root canal treatment –
- Reduce stress on the treated tooth – it is essential to take great care of the root canal treated tooth until the crown is placed. This is because the treated tooth is unprotected and becomes brittle or prone to fracture. Avoid chewing food on that side of the mouth to reduce the biting force on the treated tooth.
- Consume soft diet – it is best to stick to a soft food diet and avoid any crunchy or hard foods. Usually, root canal treated teeth are covered with a temporary filling; this filling serves to seal the tooth until the permanent restoration is placed.
Crunchy or hard foods tend to damage the temporary filling and, in severe cases, even break the tooth. Therefore, a soft diet is the safest way to maintain the health of a treated tooth.
- Gently brush your teeth – while regular oral health practice is the key to proper care, it is essential to pay attention to the amount of the force applied while brushing. Gentle strokes are sufficient to clean the tooth and save the temporary filling from damage.
- Book an appointment for crown placement – root canal treatment often makes the tooth brittle and prone to fracture. Therefore, it is crucial to get a dental crown that will protect the tooth. Moreover, it evenly distributes the biting force and prevents damage to the tooth.
- Pain relief – some people experience mild pain and discomfort after root canal treatment. Such situations can be managed by over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medicines like acetaminophen or ibuprofen.
Don’ts of root canal aftercare
- Do not chew hard or crunchy food items such as hard candy, popcorn, chips, and wafers.
- Do not brush and floss aggressively
- Never skip a follow-up appointment
- Do not delay crown placement as it will increase the risk for tooth damage
In case of severe pain and associated swelling, call your dentist immediately