PLEASE READ INSTRUCTIONS CAREFULLY.
Sometimes the after effects of treatment are quite minimal, so not all of these instructions may apply, common sense will often dictate what you should do. It is our desire that your recovery be as smooth and pleasant as possible. Following these instructions will assist you, but if you have questions about your progress, please call the office where you had treatment. Please try to call during office hours, however, if an emergency exists contact the doctors at home. Calling during office hours will afford a faster response.
DAY OF TREATMENT
Endodontic treatment (root canal) can take 1,2, or 3 appointments depending on each case. A temporary will be placed each visit on the tooth or teeth involved. This will protect them until the permanent restoration is placed. Do not eat for the first hour after you leave our office. This will allow time for the temporary to set and for the anesthetic to wear off ( if any was used).
Eat any nourishing food that can be taken with comfort. Temperature of the food doesn't matter, but avoid extremely sticky foods, such as chewing gum, caramel or taffy. Avoid foods like nuts, sunflower seeds, popcorn, etc., that may break or dislodge the temporary. It is important not to skip meals! If you take nourishment regularly, you will feel better, gain strength, have less discomfort and heal faster. If you are a diabetic, maintain your normal eating habits as much as possible and follow instructions from us or from your physician regarding your insulin schedule.
Do not disturb the surgical area today. DO NOT rinse vigorously or probe the area with an objects or your fingers. You may brush your teeth gently..
Unfortunately treatment is accompanied by some degree of discomfort, because we remove nerve tissue. You may have a prescription for pain medication, and if you take the first dose before the anesthetic has worn off, you will be able to manage any discomfort better. If you do not achieve adequate relief, you may supplement each dose with an analgesic such as aspirin, ibuprofen, naproxen sodium (Aleve) or acetaminophen. Analgesics with anti-inflammatory effects such as ibuprofen, Aleve and aspirin often give better relief than acetaminophen. Sensitivity to temperature or pressure is also possible. It is difficult to predict which symptoms, if any, you may experience and to what extent. Some swelling may occur. If you experience swelling, call our office, it may be necessary to prescribe an antibiotic for you. Remember that the most severe discomfort is usually within the first six hours after the anesthetic wears off, after that your need for medicine should lessen, if it doesn't please call the office.
INSTRUCTIONS FOR THE SECOND AND THIRD DAYS
Keeping your mouth clean after treatment will promote better healing. Use a one-quarter teaspoon of salt dissolved in an 8 ounce glass of warm water and gently rinse with portions of the solution, taking five minutes to use the entire glassful. Repeat as often as you like, but at least two or three times daily for the next five days. DO NOT rinse with hydrogen peroxide.
Begin your normal oral hygiene routine as soon as possible after treatment. Some pressure sensitivity may not permit vigorous brushing of all areas, but please make an effort to clean your teeth within the bounds of comfort.
During endodontic (root canal) treatment the nerve, blood and nutrient supply to the tooth is removed. This may cause the tooth to become brittle and prone to fracturing, which can result in the need to extract the tooth. In many cases, a full coverage crown or bonded porcelain restoration may be recommended to prevent this from happening. There will be a temporary restoration placed to prevent any bacteria from affecting the root canal and to ensure there are no further complications from the tooth. This will allow for easy removal on your next appointment for a permanent restoration to be placed. It is normal for the temporary to wear during the time in between appointments. If your temporary comes completely out before your next appointment, call us for an appointment to place it again. After the final restoration is placed there may be an adjustment period for a few days. This will allow for your tongue to get used to the new restoration in your mouth. If you feel the bite is not correctly balanced (one side hits before the other) be sure to call for an appointment for a simple adjustment. If this is not taken care of it can cause pain in your tooth or teeth, from bruising due to constant pressure on one area of the mouth.