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When can I return to work or school following root canal treatment?

root canal Battle Creek MIWhen preparing for root canal treatment, patients typically have multiple concerns, including the timeline when they can expect to return to work. Fortunately, a root canal doesn’t have to be disruptive to your routine.

In order to minimize your recovery period, you should also closely follow any directions provided by your dentist for caring for the treated tooth after the procedure. Don’t hesitate to ask if you have any questions or need any clarification about these instructions.

What To Expect From The Root Canal Treatment Time Frame

A root canal involves your dentist removing infected pulp material from the center of your tooth, cleaning out the bacteria and filling in the empty chamber with a neutral material to prevent re-infection. Eventually, the tooth is fitted with a dental crown to protect it from breaking.

This process takes place over a number of appointments.

  • First appointment: The root canal is performed, and the infected material is cleaned out of the tooth. An inert rubber-like substance is placed in the empty root canal chamber.
  • Second appointment: The dental crown is placed on the treated tooth.
  • Additional follow-up appointments (if further adjustments are needed)

The first appointment shouldn’t take any more than a couple of hours, and with proper follow-up care, most patients will be able to return to school or sedentary work the next day. Patients may want to abstain from more vigorous activity for a few additional days.

Preventing Complications After the Procedure

Of course, when patients experience complications after the root canal, it can delay their ability to resume their routines. Therefore, the patient’s main objectives after a root canal are:

  • Managing discomfort
  • Preventing infection
  • Minimizing the risk of tooth breakage

We will discuss strategies to help you achieve all of these goals, and we may prescribe painkillers or antibiotics to help in this effort. We will also educate you on the signs of a problem, such as persistent or severe pain, that warrant follow-up with our office.

A root canal shouldn’t derail your day-to-day routine. Most people will be able to go back to work or school the day after their appointment.