Preparing for Your Root Canal
Making an Appointment with an Endodontist
If your dentist believes you need to see an endodontist for root canal therapy, surgical apicoectomy, or internal teeth bleaching, he may have referred you to our office. If you don’t already have an appointment, please contact us today and we’ll be happy to get you scheduled.
During your initial conversation, a member of our office will ask if you would like any special accommodations during your appointment. Please be honest, our number one priority is ensuring your comfort. If the thought of undergoing dental work makes you uneasy, you’re not alone. In many cases, we may be able to prescribe medication that will help you relax during your treatment. Please note that a thorough examination and consultation with Dr. Buck is required before dispensing any medications.
Before Your Appointment
When you schedule your appointment, our staff will give you a username and password to register through our online portal. You can then fill out the appropriate paperwork from the comfort of your own home.
Preparing for Your Endodontist Appointment
Our care team will give you specific instructions on what to do before your appointment.
You will most likely be advised to do the following:
• Take your regular medication as prescribed by your doctor including antibiotics or medications to help you relax, but do not take any pain relievers six hours prior to your appointment.
• Do not smoke or drink alcoholic beverages from 12 hours before your procedure to 72 hours after.
• Avoid chewy, hard or sticky foods immediately before and for a few days after your procedure.
During Root Canal Treatment
Upon entering the treatment room, you’ll be seated in a comfortable, reclining chair. Before we do anything, Dr. Buck will talk with you to see how you’re feeling and answer any questions you may have.
Next, Dr. Buck and his staff will perform a comprehensive examination of the infected tooth and most likely take a few painless digital X-rays. Once Dr. Buck reviews the results, he will discuss them with you and go over your options.
If it’s determined a root canal is necessary, we’ll first numb the area with a local anesthetic in order to minimize discomfort before we proceed. At Modern Endodontics, we use the strongest local anesthetic available to virtually eliminate procedure-related pain.
Dr. Buck uses a state-of-the-art dental operating microscope and advanced endodontic tools to help ensure a comfortable and successful procedure. Treatment times vary by patient, but usually average between one to two hours.
In most cases, one root canal is all that is needed for any given tooth. However, on rare occasions, retreatment or an apicoectomy may be necessary to save the tooth.
Root Canal Recovery Time
You should be able to resume normal activities immediately after the procedure. Your tooth may be sore for a few days afterward. This is completely normal and we will give you Ibuprofen and Tylenol to help manage this minor discomfort. If indicated, Dr. Buck will use prescription-strength pain medication.
A small minority of patients experience swelling in the treated area. If this happens, please call our offices immediately.
We recommend a diet of soft foods for the first few days after your root canal. The soreness should go away in a week or so. While the tooth may feel different from your other teeth for a couple of weeks, it should feel completely normal after roughly one month.
Root Canal Follow-Up Care
Approximately six months after your treatment, you will be contacted to schedule a follow-up visit at our offices. During this visit, we’ll examine the tooth to make sure it’s healing properly. Continuing follow-up visits may be scheduled every six months for up to two years until the tooth is completely healed.