Root Canal After-Care instructions

It is normal to experience tenderness and biting sensitivity for 4-7 days after your appointment, even if you didn’t have any discomfort before you came to your appointment.  Ibuprofen is ideal for dealing with this pain.  If you don’t have any problems taking Ibuprofen, you can take 3 tablets (200mg each; 600mg total) every six hours.  If taken regularly rather than when the pain is felt, it will help to prevent the pain from coming.  This is the best medicine to reduce the swelling because it is an anti-inflammatory.  Ibuprofen is best taken with food.  If you cannot take Ibuprofen, please let us know and we will prescribe a different pain medication.

If Ibuprofen is not sufficient to relieve the pain, you may take Tylenol in addition to the Ibuprofen.  Alternate Tylenol 1000mg every 6 hours and Ibuprofen 600mg every six hours.  Therefore, take Ibuprofen 600mg, followed by Tylenol 1000mg 3 hours later.  Then take the Ibuprofen 3 hours later, again followed by taking Tylenol 1000mg, and so forth.  Every 3 hours you are taking Ibuprofen or Tylenol.  If you are taking a narcotic prescription (ie. Vicodin, Lortab, Percocet), stop taking the Tylenol and substitute Tylenol with the narcotic prescription.   

Warm salt water rinses (1/2 teaspoon salt in 1 cup of water) can help also.  This can be done 3-4 times daily.  It is rare to experience swelling or severe pain; please contact us if this occurs, as it could mean an infection has started.  

Eating: After your root canal you may have a temporary restoration in the crown portion of your tooth.  This temporary is soft when first placed.  Don’t eat for an hour after your treatment to give the temporary time to harden.  After an hour you can eat on that side, but avoid anything hard that might fracture your tooth.  The tooth is very susceptible to fracture until it is restored with a permanent crown (also known as a cap).  You may continue your regular dental hygiene regimen. 

NOTE: Alcohol intake is not advised while taking any of these medications. Should you experience discomfort that cannot be controlled with the above listed medications, or should swelling develop, please contact this office immediately.

The office telephone is answered day and night. If you need to call after hours, please have your pharmacy number available.

If you have any questions, please call our office at Kingwood Office Phone Number 281-359-3636