Pain after the root canal is not abnormal because it is a crucial procedure. It involves extensive cleaning of the inner part of your tooth root by a root canal dentist and this can lead to irritation of the neighboring nerves as well as gums. Pains after a root canal procedure should be temporary since the process is meant to alleviate pains associated with a fractured or decayed tooth. However, if there is any pain that is lingering more than necessary, you need to take an urgent step that will ensure that the problem is fixed.
Initial recovery period
In times past, root canal treatment was very painful and that is why a lot of people avoid it. In today’s world, a root canal dentist will take a lot of measures to ensure that you are relieved of pains. This will give you the opportunity to go through the procedure without much discomfort.
Prior to your treatment, your root canal dentist will administer local anesthesia so that you won’t feel much pain. While the cleaning is going on, you may feel some pressure but you will not feel much pain while the procedure is going on.
After the local anesthesia has worn off when the procedure has been completed by your root canal dentist, it is very possible for you to experience slight pain as well as sensitivity. This is much connected to the process of cleaning. When the cleaning process is going on, your dentist or endodontist will create a little opening in your tooth crown in order to clean the dental pulp chamber of your tooth. Any pain or sensitivity associated with the procedure should last for some days.
You will probably need over-the-counter pain-relief drugs since the pain is usually mild. Some of these medications include ibuprofen, acetaminophen, just to mention a few. It is very important to consult with your root canal dentist so that the right drugs will be prescribed for you. Furthermore, you should try as much as possible to stay away from crunching hard foods after your root canal because this can cause more pain for you.
When to seek help
Your root canal pain should abate after some days but if swelling and pain persist, you should not hesitate to see your dentist immediately. A lot of people require between one and two treatment sessions before achieving success with the procedure. If your case is severe, your session requirement may even be more and recurring pain may indicate that you need additional sessions.
Usually, the discomfort should reduce after you have taken the pain-relief drugs. If you discover that there is no improvement, you should inform your doctor and a stronger pain reliever may be recommended for you. However, it is very important for you to note that strong pain relievers can only be taken for a short time.
As soon as your treatment is completed, a crown will be put on it which can be made of gold, porcelain, or metal. This will go a long way in preventing imminent damage to the compromised tooth. In some instances, the pain you are experiencing is an impermanent side effect while you are getting used to the new crown.
Managing your post-root-canal pain should be done in conjunction with your dentist. Apart from medications that your dentist will prescribe for you which you can only take for some time, there are other things that you can do to manage the pain. You should take your oral health seriously. And you should avoid crunchy as well as hard foods until the time that your pain subsides. If you are a smoker, you should quit totally or for some time. You should also consider activities that can help in relieving stress such as meditation, yoga, and so on, as they can help you not to focus on your pain.
6 Tips For Speeding Up Root Canal Recovery
Speeding up recovery after your root canal procedure will give you the opportunity to get back to work and resume your normal activities. Here are few tips that will aid your recovery.
#1. Keep your head elevated and don’t eat right away
After your root canal procedure, you may experience pain and swelling in your mouth. You can reduce the pain and swelling by keeping your head raised up, especially when you are lying down. You can achieve this by adding an extra pillow below your head when you are sleeping and you only need to do this for some days. It is also important to stay away from eating until the numbness has gone down.
#2. Gargle with warm salty water
When you gargle with warm, salty water regularly after your procedure, you will be keeping your mouth clean and prevent infections that can cause more pain for you. This will help in speeding up your recovery process.
#3. Eat ice cream and use a cold compress
You can take ice cream after your root canal since the cold will help to reduce inflammation which can help your healing process. If you don’t like ice cream, you can be using a cold compress for about 15 minutes many times daily after some days of succeeding in your procedure.
#4. Avoid anything that could cause inflammation
You should try as much as possible to stay away from foods that can inflame your gums and lead to swelling or pain. Some of these foods are hot beverages, hard foods, drinking with straws, toffees, just to mention a few. You should avoid them after your procedure so that your recovery will not be slowed down.
#5. Avoid strenuous activity for a couple of days
It is very important for you to stay away from activities that will stress you up, at least for 48 hours after your procedure. Activities like hiking, running, physical labor, or playing sports should be avoided at this period. Try as much as possible to rest properly and you will be back in no time.
#6. Call your dentist if you’re worried
If your symptoms are persisting (and this is very rare), you should reach out to your root canal dentist immediately. This will give you the opportunity to properly examine yourself so that your dentist will give the right treatment to you.