After Root Canal Treatment

(541) 469-3513


  • The tooth and its surrounding gum tissue may be somewhat tender for several days.  Some discomfort may be present when the anesthesia wears off.  If needed, take prescribed pain medication.
  • Prescription pain medications often induce drowsiness.  Do not drive or operate any power equipment while under the influence of these agents.  Follow instructions provided by the pharmacist.
  • DO NOT consume alcohol.

SWELLING:  In order to minimize swelling following treatment, apply an ice bag wrapped in a towel to the outside of the face in the operated area, 15 minutes on, 15 minutes off, for a period of 4 hours.  If the swelling persists, call the office.

RINSING:  You may start warm (not hot) salt water rinses (1/2 tsp salt in 8 oz of water) 3-4 times per day for the week after surgery.

EATING:  Maintaining adequate fluid intake during the first 24 hour is important to avoid dehydration.  Do not chew on the side of your mouth just treated.  Eat nourishing soft foods to encourage proper healing.  Do not chew or bite on the treated tooth until you have had it restored.

ACTIVITY/EXERCISE:  After leaving the office, relax as much as possible for the remainder of the day.  No strenuous activity for several days.

ORAL HYGIENE:  Brushing and oral hygiene procedures should be accomplished regularly in all areas.

SMOKING:  DO NOT smoke during the post-surgical period.  Tobacco use interferes with the healing process.

ANTIBIOTICS:  If antibiotics are prescribed, take them as directed until ALL ARE GONE, as long as there are no adverse reactions or discomfort (itching, redness, etc).  Follow instructions provided by the pharmacist.

ALCOHOL:  All intake of alcohol should be stopped.  The combination of alcohol and certain pain medications is not recommended.

Remember, do not chew or bite on the treated tooth until you have had it restored, as the tooth will now be susceptible to fracture after  the root canal.  Your treated tooth will require a build-up and crown or other restoration to protect and restore it to full function.

Call immediately if you have excessive bleeding, swelling, severe pain, fever, or reaction to the medication.

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