Root canals have gotten a bad rap. We’ve heard the stories about how painful they are or how comfortable they can be. “Root canals have become synonymous with pain and discomfort,” says Dr. Maryam Adibfar, a Toronto-based dentist who has been performing root canals for years. “But as the dental industry, technology and skills have advanced, root canals have become a whole lot more comfortable to undergo.”
In hopes of easing any concerns you might have about a root canal, we set out to help uncover the truth about these once-unpleasant procedures. Let’s take a closer look at some of the most common questions about root canals. You’ll see they aren’t something to fear.
Root Canals: Everything You’ve Wanted to Know
How much pain will I be in? It’s true. Root canals used to be quite painful. But the advancements in technology and dental procedures have made that a thing of the past. You can now undergo a routine root canal without experiencing much pain or discomfort at all. “Times have changed and we can now offer root canals that are almost painless,” says Dr. Adibfar.
How long does it take to recovery? In the past, it could have taken a few weeks. But today, it only takes a few days. Your body needs this time to restore your tooth’s strength and health. “We have a comprehensive post-root canal recovery plan for you to follow,” explains Dr. Adibfar. “Following this closely will help reduce any discomfort you might experience and prevent potential issues from occurring as your body recuperates.”
Is the root canal all I need? Some people think the “root canal” is everything you need. But it’s just part of the dental process. Depending on your specific situation, you’ll like need a permanent crown to filling. This will help protect your tooth. “We spend a lot of time discussing each step in the process with our patients,” says Dr. Adibfar. “This focus on education and transparency is important because it helps ease concerns and set expectations.”
I can return to normal day-to-day life immediately after, right? What you do after you leave our dental office is one of the most important parts of the root canal process. You will experience sensitivity around the tooth. Depending on how your body reacts, you may also notice swelling or have a sore jaw. As you follow the post-procedure care instructions, it’s important to take care of yourself. Use ice to reduce swelling, avoid eating until the numbing has subsided and don’t indulge on hard foods. The first few days after the procedure are critical. It’s important not to over-exert yourself or do things that may damage your sensitive tooth. Remember it’s only partially fixed at this point. “While root canals are now almost painless, it’s important to focus on doing everything you can to help your body recuperate,” explains Dr. Adibfar. “You’re body is healing – so don’t over do it.”
You will also want to gently brush and floss your teeth during the recovery period to reduce any likelihood of infection.
You’re Not Alone: Don’t Be Afraid to Reach Out
Root canals are very effective and the success rate of these procedures are quite high. While issues or complications are very unlikely, it’s important to contact us if you experience abnormal symptoms once you leave our office.
Here’s when to contact us:
– You have visible swelling inside or outside of your mouth that is above and beyond what you think is normal
– You experience an allergic reaction
– If the temporary crown or filling feels loose or shifts
– If any of the symptoms you experienced before the root canal procedure come back
We’re always here to help. Contact our dental team if you have any questions during your recovery. No question is a silly one.
“We care about your health and oral health,” says Dr. Adbifar. “Even if it may seem like an overreaction, we’d recommend calling us. We’re never far away!”
Are You Having a Root Canal?
Contact our team today if you have any questions before your procedure or after it’s completed. We’re always happy to talk to you.