Nerve problems can arise from a variety of reasons. The primary cause of nerve disease is decay. Additionally, trauma is another major cause of nerve death. A typical endodontic procedure involves the removal of the nerve, or pulp, from the interior of the tooth. This is followed by medicaments placed into the canal to remove bacteria. Finally, the now empty space is billed with a material to seal the tooth to prevent re-infection. The tooth can then be restored into function.
Post-Op Instructions Root Canal Therapy
It is normal for you to have some tenderness, pain or swelling with a tooth after root canal treatment, for several days, even up to a few weeks. You should take an anti-inflammatory (Advil or Aleve) medication before your local anesthetic wears off. Try to avoid chewing in the area that was worked on, until all tenderness is gone and until your permanent restoration has been placed.
If you were not prescribed pain medication by our office, then you can take Advil (Ibuprofen), Tylenol (Acetaminophen), or Aleve (Naproxen Sodium) for pain.
If you were prescribed a medication for pain, make sure to take it as directed.
If you were given a prescription for medication containing Ibuprofen (ex. Vicoprofen), do not consume any additional anti-inflammatory medication.
However, if the medication that was prescribed, does not contain Ibuprofen, then it can help to take your prescription, alternating every 3 hours with anti-inflammatory medication (600 – 800 mg of Ibuprofen). Do not take anti-inflammatory medication if you are allergic to it.
For example: Take anti-inflammatory medication at 6 am. Then take your prescription at 9 am, then take your anti-inflammatory at 12 pm, then take the prescription at 3 pm, and so on. The important thing to remember is that you must let 6 hours pass between doses of anti-inflammatory medication. And you must not take your prescription doses any sooner than directed on the label.
As you begin to feel better, you can stretch the times out, eventually discontinuing all medication. If you have any questions about this, please call our office.
You will have a temporary filling or temporary crown on the tooth, after a root canal therapy has been done. If you had a root canal done by an endodontist, you will have a temporary filling placed in the tooth.
You should call our office as soon as possible to schedule an appointment for a permanent restoration and make sure to maintain good daily oral hygiene. When a root canal is done on a tooth, the nutrient, blood and nerve supply to the tooth has been removed causing the tooth to become brittle and prone to fracture. Delay in getting a permanent restoration for your treated tooth can result in the tooth cracking or breaking, and possibly becoming non-restorable.
If for some reason your pain should become severe, or if swelling develops, please call our office as soon as possible. After hours, if you have an emergency, you may page the doctors. You will need to call the office to get the current paging number off of the answering machine. If you have any questions about your medicine or the procedure that was performed, please call our office.
If you have extreme pain or swelling, and you are unable to reach us, dial 911 or go to an emergency room.