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What Can I Eat & Drink After a Root Canal?

A root canal treatment (endodontics) usually sounds more daunting than it actually is. We carry out the procedure in order to treat infections in the centre of the tooth, and it means we’re able to save teeth that might otherwise have to be removed.

The proper care after your treatment will help to minimise pain and speed up the healing process. You might feel hungry or thirsty, but be sure to read this guide before delving into the kitchen cupboards.

When might you need root canal therapy?

If the pulp in your tooth is damaged due to a bacterial infection, left untreated the bacteria can spread and the pulp will eventually die. This means that bacteria has spread to the root canal and the patient may experience pain, swelling of the face, pus oozing from the affected tooth, and discolouration.

Not having a root canal can mean the infection spreads further – to other parts of the body – and symptoms can become even more severe. In some cases, this can result in death. Root canal therapy addresses the infection in the root canal and is the preferred treatment over extraction.

Eating immediately after a root canal

Straight after your root canal treatment, you may be experiencing numbness from anaesthesia. That means you’ll have to be careful when eating or drinking, to make sure you don’t burn or bite yourself.

Consume food or drinks with caution, remembering to:

  • Eat on the unaffected side (the side that isn’t numb)
  • Eat soft foods that don’t require lots of chewing or hard biting
  • Take your time and eat slowly
  • Avoid very hot food and drinks

If possible, avoid eating until the sensation in your mouth returns.

What to eat & drink during recovery

When hunger sets in, try to eat soft foods that won’t irritate your mouth to allow it to recover. Some things you may want to eat include:

  • Scrambled eggs
  • Yoghurt, milkshake or a smoothie
  • Mashed potatoes
  • Soft, shredded meat, or tofu
  • Soft fruit (canned fruit is usually ideal)
  • Pasta, noodles, quinoa or couscous
  • Cooked vegetables
  • Soft bread
  • Hummus
  • Frozen yoghurt or sorbet
  • Oatmeal
  • Soup
  • Water

Things to avoid

There is some food and drink that should stay firmly off the menu after a dental procedure such as a root canal.

Avoid the following:

  • Crunchy food, such as apples, raw carrots and corn on the cob
  • Chewy food and lollies
  • Hard food like nuts that could damage the surgical site
  • Alcohol – this could stimulate bleeding
  • Very hot food can increase sensitivity – let things cool before consuming them
  • Spicy food could also irritate the area or cause discomfort

Contact King Street Dental for more information

If you’re experiencing pain or swelling, book an appointment with King Street Dental, so your dentist can check for infection and resolve the issue. If you’ve had a root canal and have any questions about the healing process, don’t hesitate to get in touch. You can reach us on  (03) 9841 8033 or [email protected].

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