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Home Care Instructions

Your body isn't a temple, it's a home you'll live in forever.....Take care of it


  1. For the first few days and up to 10 days following your Root Canal Treatment, you may feel some mild pain, soreness and sensitivity that can include throbbing and minor swelling while biting or chewing on your affected tooth. This can be especially pronounced if you had pain, swelling and/or infection prior to your treatment. This discomfort can be SPONTANEOUS beginning a few days after your treatment and may continue for 1-2 weeks or longer. If you have symptoms that persist for more than 10 days, please contact our office.
  2. Take any medication that is prescribed for you according to instructions. (If antibiotics have been prescribed and you take birth control pills, consult with a pharmacist and/or physician.)
  3. Continue brushing and flossing as normal, being careful on the treated tooth as the temporary filling could dislodge.
  4. Usually a temporary filling has been placed on your tooth. DO not bite or chew with the tooth for one hour and while you are numb. Also, be very gentle with the tooth until the permanent restoration is placed. Try to chew on the opposite side. Do not eat anything sticky or chewy for the next few days. It is good to drink liquids right away. This will aid in hardening the temporary filling.
  5. It is very important to contact your General Dentist office as soon as possible (within 15 days) following your root canal treatment for the final restoration. Any unnecessary delay on placement of the final restoration may damage the tooth permanently and/or allow the tooth to become re-infected.
  6. Call our office if you are in severe pain or experience swelling or if you have any questions.
The acids formed by plaque can be counteracted by simple saliva in your mouth, which acts as a buffer and remineralizing agent. Dentists often recommend chewing sugarless gum to stimulate your flow of saliva. However, though it is the body's natural defense against cavities, saliva alone is not sufficient to combat tooth decay. The best way to prevent caries is to brush and floss regularly. To rebuild the early damage caused by plaque bacteria, we use fluoride, a natural substance which helps to remineralize the tooth structure. Fluoride is added to toothpaste to fight cavities and clean teeth. The most common source of fluoride is in the water we drink. Fluoride is added to most community water supplies and to many bottled and canned beverages.If you are at medium to high risk for cavities, your dentist may recommend special high concentration fluoride gels, mouth rinses, or dietary fluoride supplements. Your dentist may also use professional strength anti-cavity varnish, or sealants-thin, plastic coatings that provide an extra barrier against food and debris.
Everyone is at risk for cavities, because we all carry bacteria in our mouths. Those with a diet high in carbohydrates and sugary foods and those who live in communities without fluoridated water are likely candidates for cavities.Children and senior citizens are the two groups at highest risk for cavities.
Decay that is unique to adults:- 
1. Root cavities - As you age, your gums can recede, leaving parts of your tooth root exposed. Since there is no enamel covering your tooth roots, these exposed areas easily decay. Most people over 60 have root cavities as a result of gum disease.
2. Repeated decay around existing fillings - Decay can form around existing fillings and crowns. This is because these areas are not as smooth as a natural tooth surface and can decay easier.
3. Cavities from dry mouth - dry mouth is present due to a decrease in saliva.
Guidelines for aftercare of your mouth
1. Take care to only have cold drinks and do not eat until the local anaesthetic has worn off. Avoid hot drinks or hot food for the first day and do not ‘swill’ liquid over the area. Try not to disturb the area with your tongue or fingers. Do not undertake strenuous exercise for the first 48 hours (running / gym).
2. You may have some swelling and/or bruising following your treatment – this usually reaches a peak 2 to 3 days later. This is quite normal and both will subside naturally after a few days. Swelling can be reduced with ice packs (or a bag of frozen peas) wrapped in a towel. Hold on the cheek area for a maximum of 10 minutes at a time with 20 minutes break. After 24 hours gentle heat is more beneficial. Sleeping propped up slightly on 2-3 pillows may also help.
3. Pain should not be a big problem. Although you may be sore for a few days after any surgery in your mouth, this can be easily managed with simple analgesics (pain killers). You should take these regularly at the maximum stated dose for the first 2 days after your surgery. Take whatever painkillers you normally take for headaches, aches and sprains (ibuprofen and paracetamol make a good combination), and take your first dose before the local anaesthetic has completely worn off.
4. If after a few days you experience increasing pain and swelling, you must return to The Implant Centre as soon as possible so that we can ensure you are not beginning to develop an infection.
5. If you have a denture that covers the surgical area please wear it as little as possible for the first week to protect the surgical site during its initial healing period. You should always leave the denture out at night.
6. The stitches are dissolvable but often remain for around 2-3 weeks, if they are uncomfortable or annoying, you may contact us to remove them.
7. Some minor bleeding after surgery in the mouth is normal. If this persists, apply pressure by biting firmly down over the area on a dampened gauze swab or clean handkerchief for 60 minutes whilst sitting upright. Do not keep checking or changing the gauze. You should contact us if bleeding persists for any reason after applying pressure in this way.
8. If you have been given a course of antibiotics to take after your surgery, please ensure that you complete the course.
Cleaning
1. Successful oral surgery depends on keeping the mouth as clean as possible.
2. Please start to use the mouthwash you have been given on the evening of your surgery and continue for 1 week. This is very important. You should gently bathe the surgical site by holding approximately 15ml over the site (the equivalent of half a cap-full) for at least 1 minute, 3 times a day, for 7 days.
3. You should also start cleaning your other teeth as normal with a toothbrush, starting on the evening of your surgery. Avoid brushing the surgical site for the first few days, but then begin to carefully clean this area with a toothbrush as well, once tenderness permits.
4. Hot salt mouthwashes (a cup of hot water with a teaspoon of salt) are very beneficial for healing in the first week but taste awful. Ensure that the mouthwash is not so hot that it scalds and then hold the hot mouthwash over the surgical site until it cools. Repeat as often as possible.
5. Try to keep food away from the surgical area for as long as possible. Rinse following eating to keep the area clean.
6. You are advised not to smoke until the wound has healed as this severely limits healing in the mouth.
7. We want your recovery to be as smooth and pleasant as possible. It is vital to follow these instructions very carefully – if you have any concerns or questions regarding your progress, please do not hesitate to contact us.
The best way to combat cavities is to follow three simple steps: Cut down on sweets and between-meal snacks. Remember, it's these sugary and starchy treats that put your teeth at extra risk. Brush after every meal and floss daily. Cavities most often begin in hard-to-clean areas between teeth and in the fissures and pits-the edges in the tooth crown and gaps between teeth. Hold the toothbrush at a 45-degree angle and brush inside, outside and between your teeth and on the top of your tongue. Be sure the bristles are firm, not bent, and replace the toothbrush after a few weeks to safeguard against reinfecting your mouth with old bacteria than can collect on the brush.. Children under six should only use a small pea-sized dab of toothpaste on the brush and should spit out as much as possible because a child's developing teeth are sensitive to higher fluoride levels. Finally, because caries is a transmittable disease, toothbrushes should never be shared, especially with your children. See your dentist at least every six months for checkups and professional cleanings. Because cavities can be difficult to detect a thorough dental examination is very important. If you get a painful toothache, if your teeth are very sensitive to hot or cold foods, or if you notice signs of decay like white spots, tooth discolorations or cavities, make an appointment right away. The longer you wait to treat infected teeth the more intensive and lengthy the treatment will be. Left neglected, cavities can lead to root canal infection, permanent deterioration of decayed tooth substance and even loss of the tooth itself.
Some patients find the experience of wearing a denture for the first time to be challenging. A denture is a foreign object, and unfortunately, it cannot duplicate the exact feel and function of your natural teeth. It will be a new sensation that will take you a period of time to adjust.
Learning to chew with new dentures takes time. Start with soft foods and gradually introduce more difficult foods. Chew on both sides of your mouth at the same time to stabilize your teeth. Avoid biting into foods with your front teeth, as it may dislodge your dentures.
It is especially difficult to adjust to a lower denture, because it "floats" on your lower gums and will not have the suction that your upper denture has. It will move around in your mouth, even out of your mouth, until you have mastered it.
Try resting your tongue against the inside, front edge of the lower denture to help hold it in place. Until you learn good tongue and lip control, adhesives are recommended. Adhesives may also be useful for upper dentures. If you are an existing denture wearer and have become accustomed to adhesives, you most likely will have to continue using adhesives for your dentures.
At first, you may want to consider wearing your dentures all the time, even at night, to adapt to them more quickly. After you have become accustomed to them, you should take them out at night and follow a good cleaning routine.
It is common to feel sore places on your gums as you adjust to your new dentures. If you develop a sore spot, rinse your mouth with warm salt water and return to the practice as needed for a denture adjustment. Adjustments are typically free for the first 60 days and are an expected part of any new denture.