Post Treatment Care for Non-Surgical or Re-treatment Therapy
It is important that you understand what you will feel after treatment and more important to know what you need to do to ensure a successful outcome for your treatment.
The sensations you will experience after treatment are mediated by several factors. Our experience has shown that if there was pain prior to treatment, there will be a degree of pain that will persist for a few days after the procedure. Remember that pain radiates. It is not unusual during the healing phase to feel sensations not related to the area of the treated tooth or even to feel pain when there was none prior to treatment.
Often there is minimal discomfort for a few days after treatment, however, an increase in the intensity of discomfort may occur two to three days later and persist for a period of two or three days. This is considered normal, a function of how the body’s immune response protects it from foreign materials and the inflammation produced by the mechanics of the root canal procedure. A little swelling or soreness does not mean infection; it means an increase in blood volume going to the area to assist in the healing process.
Try to avoid heavy chewing on the treated tooth for at least a week. We strongly recommend that you return to your dentist and have the entire filling replaced within a one to two week period. All fillings can leak, and their replacement becomes an important part of the success of the root canal treatment.
Post Treatment Care for Surgical Therapy
Sleep with your head in an elevated position for the first night (one extra pillow). Swelling may occur after surgery and this is completely normal. It may increase for 48 to 72 hours, but will then gradually subside.
If you experience minor discomfort, use extra strength Tylenol (avoid aspirin) every 2-3 hours. For discomfort of a more intense nature, use the analgesic prescription provided. Antibiotics and any other medications prescribed must be taken as directed. If there is any confusion about the directions, please contact our office immediately.
Please wait a full 24 hours after surgery before rinsing your mouth. Rinse after each meal and before retiring using a teaspoon of salt in a glass of warm water.
Avoid eating for the first 6 to 8 hours. After that it is important to maintain proper nourishment, however, we encourage you to maintain a soft food diet for at least 2 days.
Avoid hot fluids or food while “frozen” as this may burn your mouth. Warm food may be taken once freezing has worn off. Avoid crunchy foods at all times during the healing period.
Refrain from smoking during the first 24 hours. Minimize the number of times you smoke during the remaining healing phase as this tends to dry out the mouth and delay healing. Avoid strenuous exercise for 48 hours. Avoid drinking alcoholic beverages.
Keep talking to a minimum the first day and refrain from lifting your lip in order to look at what has been done. It is tempting, however, you can inadvertently cause harm. Refrain from pressing or touching the treated area.
Maintain your normal oral hygiene program of brushing and flossing in all other areas of the mouth. Be careful to avoid the area of the incision. Periodic (3-4 times daily) salt water rinses will maintain hygiene in the surgical site.