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Follow Up Care After Root Canal Therapy


Aftercare following Endodontic (Root Canal) Therapy



What To Expect:

  • It is not uncommon for a tooth to be uncomfortable or even exhibit a dull ache after receiving root-canal therapy. This should subside within one week.
  • Your tooth will be sensitive to biting pressure and may even appera loose. This is a result of the sensitivity of nerve-endings in the tissue just outside the end of the root, where we cleaned, irrigated, and placed filler and sealer material. This feeling will be short-lived.
  • You may feel a depression or rough area (on top of a back tooth or the back of a front tooth) where our access was made. There is a soft temporary material in that area, which may wear away to some degree before your next visit.
  • Occasionally, a small "bubble" or "pimple" will appear on the gum tissue within a few days after completion of a root canal. This represents the release of pressure and bacteria, which no longer can be sustained around the tooth. This should disappear within a few days.

What to do:

  • We recommend you take something for pain-relief within one hour of leaving our office, to get the medication into your blood system before the anesthesia we administered begins to subside. Generally, only one does is needed. We recommend Ibuprofen (Mortin, Advil). You may take 2 (200mg) Motrin every 2 hours up to 8 times a daily (16 tablets, 3200mg total)
  • If you have a medical condition or gastrointestinal disorder that precludes Ibuprofen, Acetaminophen (Tylenol, Excedrin) is a substitute, although it does not contain anti-imflammatory properties. Asprin and asprin-containing products are not advisable, as they tend to increase bleeding from the area that was treated.
  • Whenever possible, try to chew on the opposite side from the tooth that we have just treated, until the area has been restored. Until that time, your tooth is still weakend and could fracture.
  • Please avoid chewing gum, caramels, or other sticky, soft candy, which could dislodge the temporary material or fracture the tooth.
  • Drink ice water or apply ice to the area if you have any jaw swelling (0-48 hours post operative).
  • Rinse with Listerine to help gum soreness and to keep the area clean (0-48 hours post operative).


  Please Call Us If:

  • You are experiencing symptoms more intense or of longer duration than those described above.
  • You encounter significant post-operative swelling.
  • The temporary material is dislodged, feels loose, or feels "high" when biting.
  • Your tooth fractures.
  • You have any questions at all.