Ways to Treat Pain and Anxiety Before A Root Canal Procedure

If your dentist has recommended you have a root canal done to restore the viability of your teeth's roots, you are most likely very anxious and maybe a bit scared of the entire procedure. Root canals have gotten a bad rap over the years and many people believe having a root canal means a great deal of pain. While having a root canal is not 100% pain-free, you do not need to become a victim of the tall tales being told about the pain. There are measures that can be taken to relieve pain, and there are a few things you can do in advance of your procedure to help ward off unnecessary pain.

Ask The Dentist About Antibiotics

If you have increased inflammation in and around the root area of your teeth, you are probably already dealing with a bit of tenderness or pain before you even have the procedure done. Ask your dentist if an antibiotic is recommended before having the root canal done. Taking an antibiotic can help reduce inflammation that causes pain, making the procedure much more tolerable.

Take A Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory (NSAID)

Taking an NSAID before having the root canal done can help numb the area, making the pain much less noticeable. Take ibuprofen or a similar over-the-counter non-steroidal anti-inflammatory every day for a few days before the procedure is done. Continue for a few days after the procedure, as well. NSAIDs can be taken in conjunction with pain relief medication, giving you the benefit of less inflammation. 

Get A Full Night Of Sleep

Make sure to go to bed early the night before you have your root canal. Getting a full night's sleep will make a difference in how you are able to react to and handle any pain from the procedure. You will feel more rested, less stressed and able to handle the anxiety better than if you were sleep-deprived going into the procedure.

Fill Your Belly

The night before your procedure, have a relaxing meal with your favorite foods. Avoid things that will give you an upset stomach, however. Having a large meal will keep you feeling comfortable during the procedure since you will not have an empty belly. You will have some trouble eating for a day or two after the procedure, so having that last meal will give you the satisfaction to get you through a few days of soft foods.

Ask For Relief

Before having your root canal, speak with your dentist about your pain-relief options. Many people will opt for laughing gas so they are still aware of what is going on around them during the procedure. Mild sedation can also be done to relax you, making you a bit drowsy when the procedure is being done. There is the option for a general anesthetic if you are extremely prone to pain and fear.