Is it necessary to take powerful painkillers after a root canal?

Root canals are often associated with pain. Sometimes intense pain, but that is not caused by the root canal itself, but by the infection or inflammation of the pulp (inside) of the tooth before the procedure is done.

When someone goes to the dentist for a root canal, they are completely numb under local anaesthetics and no pain is felt during the procedure.

There could be however some pain felt after a root canal and it is usually caused by remaining inflammation around the roots that slowly heals. This pain only lasts for a temporary amount of time, from a few days, rarely up to a few weeks. This type of pain can be relieved with common painkillers like anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin), or with acetaminophen (Tylenol).

In case of more severe pain that persists months after the root canal procedure has been done, it is recommended to consult your dentist or your endodontist to verify if there were any complications.

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