Root canal, or endodontic treatment, is one of the most popular dental procedures. Since it allows patients to avoid having toothaches and the possibility of losing a tooth due to severe infection or decay, it is a solution worth going for if you want to keep a healthy and complete set of pearly whites.
Aside from maintaining a lovely smile, patients that get root canals, Fort Lauderdale dental experts say, can minimize the risk of jawbone degeneration due to tooth loss. This treatment also prevents the spread of infection to the other neighboring healthy teeth.
Root canal therapy
When you undergo endodontic treatment, your dentist will remove the damaged or infected pulp, nerves, and bacteria that are causing you pain. Once the tooth interior is thoroughly clean, it will be filled with a special or medicated dental filling, which will restore it to its full function.
Your dentist may also cover the tooth with a dental crown, depending on its condition or your request.
A typical root canal procedure lasts between 60 and 90 minutes and often requires two appointments.
Like other types of dental procedures, you will feel some discomfort after a getting root canal. The treated area will feel tender and sore for a few days. Because of this, there are some things that you have to do and avoid doing to prevent complications.
Following your dentist’s aftercare instructions will help you heal faster, as well.
Having the right items ready once you get home after your root canal therapy can help you deal with and go through the post-treatment more smoothly and with fewer hassles.
As such, before heading to your dentist for your scheduled endodontic procedure, make sure you have a stock of the following items:
1. Prescribed antibiotics and pain relievers
During your pre-treatment visit, your dentist will likely give you a list of medicines you have to take after the procedure. These often include antibiotics and pain relievers.
Once you have the prescription, it is best to go to a drugstore right away. This is something that you have to do if you can’t have another person buy them for you. You also need to take these medicines immediately after the procedure.
Consider getting the prescribed number of medicines, as well, to avoid running out when you need them and making an emergency run to the drugstore when you still don’t feel like you’re in the best condition.
2. Soft foods
Your dentist will instruct you to avoid eating certain kinds of food after your root canal treatment. These include sticky and hard treats, such as candies, taffy, beef jerky, cracklings, and raw crunchy fruits and veggies. Snacking on these can chip or displace your restored tooth.
It is also best to minimize your intake of these treats overall for better dental health and to require less forceful (and painful)teeth cleaning in a Fort Lauderdale clinic or wherever you may be located.
Additionally, avoid hot soups and stews since the extreme temperature can cause discomfort when the hot liquid gets in contact with your sensitive tooth.
To stay nourished and avoid getting hungry while recovering from your root canal therapy, make sure you keep a stock of these soft foods:
- Eggs, for making omelets
- Soft fruits, such as avocados, bananas, and papayas, which you can mash or turn into smoothies
- Carrots, potatoes, and other root crops that you can boil and puree or bake
- Pasta and other types of noodles
- Pudding and Jell-O
3. Cold treats or desserts
Eating soft, cold treats, such as ice cream and yogurt, can help provide relief to the soreness and tenderness.
As such, stock your fridge with your favorite ice cream and yogurt flavors. However, make sure you get plain ones; that is, those that do not contain any nuts, chocolate chips, and other ingredients that are crunchy or chewy.
If you opt for ice pops, do not bite or chew on them; make sure you only suck on them to avoid damaging the fillings or crown.
If you plan on making fruit smoothies, avoid putting too much ice in these. Additionally, if you feel some discomfort while eating or drinking something cold, stop immediately. This increase in sensitivity may intensify the soreness and tenderness in the treated area.
4. Dental supplies
Lastly, even if you feel some soreness around your mouth, you have to continue practicing good oral hygiene. This means brushing and flossing as usual.
If you are running low on dental supplies, restock your bathroom cabinet. Make sure you have enough floss, toothpaste, and antiseptic mouthwash.
In case the toothbrush you are using has hard bristles, consider switching to a soft and medium-sized one.
When brushing and flossing, remember to use gentle motions, especially around the treated area. And if you feel a stinging pain while rinsing with mouthwash, dilute it with water first.
Additionally, make sure you have one or two ice packs in your medicine cabinet. Applying a cold compress around the treated area can help reduce any swelling. It will also provide relief to the soreness you feel, as well.
To heal faster from your root canal treatment and avoid damaging the filling or crown used to restore your tooth, follow these tips. Contact or see your dentist immediately if you experience any discomfort and prolonged symptoms, as well.