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Root Canal Treatment


A root canal is a procedure to remove diseased pulp from a root canal in your tooth. The pulp is tissue that contains nerves and blood vessels that fill your tooth roots. Each root secures your tooth to your gum and jawbone.



  • Pain medicine: You may be given a prescription medicine to decrease pain. Do not wait until the pain is severe before you take this medicine.
  • Antibiotic medicine: This is given to fight or prevent an infection caused by bacteria. Take as directed.
  • Take your medicine as directed. Contact your healthcare provider if you think your medicine is not helping or if you have side effects. Tell him or her if you are allergic to any medicine. Keep a list of the medicines, vitamins, and herbs you take. Include the amounts, and when and why you take them. Bring the list or the pill bottles to follow-up visits. Carry your medicine list with you in case of an emergency.

Follow up with your dentist or endodontist as directed:

You may need to return to have your temporary crown replaced with a permanent one. You may also need an exam to make sure your tooth is healing. Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.


  • Care for your teeth: This may help prevent cavities, tooth injuries, and other tooth problems. Visit your dental healthcare provider regularly to have your teeth cleaned and checked.
  • Do not smoke: If you smoke, it is never too late to quit. It may take you longer to heal if you smoke. Ask your healthcare provider for information if you need help quitting.

Contact your dentist or endodontist if:

  • You have a fever.
  • Your new filling or crown falls out or feels like it is out of place.
  • Your tooth cracks or breaks.
  • Your tooth hurts when you bite down.
  • You have questions or concerns about your condition or care.

Seek care immediately if:

  • You have increasing pain in or around your tooth that does not go away with pain medicine.
  • You have new or increased swelling in your gums or face.
  • You have tooth pain that spreads up to your gums and cheek.

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.

Learn more about Root Canal Treatment (Discharge Care)

Micromedex® Care Notes