Home Care Instructions

Temporary Crown Care Instructions:

  • Your temporary crown is held in place with temporary cement. Your porcelain crown will arrive in a few weeks.
  • Flossing normally can pull your crown off. When flossing, pull down/up toward your gums, and then pull the floss out through the side toward your cheek.
  • Your teeth and/or gums may be sore for a few days after your appointment. Try to chew on the opposite side of your mouth during this time. Rinse with plain water or warm salt water, but do not use Listerine (it may sting).
  • Some foods to avoid while you have your temporary crown in place: Sticky foods such as candy, chewy sandwiches, cheese pizza, etc. and hard or crunchy foods like ice, nuts, or crunchy cereals
  • If your temporary crown becomes loose and you are out-of-town, you may attempt to reposition it and re-glue it with temporary cement from the dental aisle (from CVS/Target/Rite-Aid, etc.).
  • If in town, please call us and have our staff re-cement the temporary crown properly.
  • If the temporary crown comes out of your mouth or breaks, save the crown (or its component pieces) for repairs.
  • Please call us if you experience any bothersome sensitivity to hot or cold, any lingering achiness, or any sharp pains when chewing.   704-540-7600


After a Deep Cleaning - Home Care Instructions:

  • You can take over-the-counter pain medication (other than aspirin) for any discomfort you may have.
  • Avoid chewing food until you are no longer numb so that you do not bite your tongue or cheek.
  • Avoid eating crunchy, spicy, or hot foods today. (ie: taco chips, carrots, crispy fried chicken)
  • Rinse with warm salt water if your gums are sore and tender (1 tsp. salt in 1 cup warm water)
  • Drink at least 8 glasses of water today to help flush out remaining bacteria that is present.
  • Brush gently today even if your gums are tender to help remove plaque that has started to reform.
  • You don't need to floss today if there is too much sensitivity.  However, starting again tomorrow, do so each day.
  • The success of today's treatment depends directly on the improvement of your oral hygiene!


Nightguard Care Instructions:

  • Rinse the nightguard in hot water before putting it in your mouth at night. This allows it to soften slightly and fit over your teeth more easily.
  • Rinse it off in the morning after removing it from your mouth.
  • Clean with a water and Listerine mix and your toothbrush.
  • Do not soak the nightguard in Listerine; it will warp the nightguard.
  • Do NOT use toothpaste to clean; it will dull the surface of the nightguard.
  • At first, you will have a feeling of "fullness" when you wear the nightguard. Give yourself some time to adjust to this; it is protecting your teeth.
  • Return to the office if you experience sore jaw muscles or sore teeth after wearing the nightguard.
  • Return to the office if it feels too loose or too tight; we will adjust it for you.
  • Bring your nightguard to every appointment that you have with us so that we can re-evaluate and clean your nightguard for you.
  • If you have any further questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to call us!


After an Extraction - Home Care Instructions:

  • NO SMOKING, FORCEFUL SPITTING, OR USE OF A STRAW for 3 days after tooth has been removed (extracted).
  • DO NOT RINSE YOUR MOUTH TODAY--You may begin rinsing your mouth tomorrow. Rinse gently every 3 to 4 hours (especially after meals) using one-quarter teaspoon of salt mixed in a glass of warm water. Continue rinses for several days after extraction to keep the area clean.
  • BLEEDING--Following extractions, some bleeding is to be expected. Be sure to replace the gauze with fresh, dry gauze about every 30 minutes, for the first 2 hours after the extraction. If persistent bleeding occurs, bite on a teabag for 30 minutes (plain Lipton teabags are great).
  • SWELLING--Apply an ice pack, crushed ice in a Ziploc bag, or a bag of frozen veggies to the affected area for 10-20 minutes at a time, then leave off for 30 minutes. Alternate ice on/off for 4-5 hours. Wrap ice bag in a thin towel or cloth.
  • PAIN--For mild to moderate pain, use Tylenol or Advil (or their generic equivalents).
  • FOOD--A diet of soft foods is recommended for at least the first 24 hours. You are discouraged from eating sharp/hard foods until the extraction site heals (e.g. tortilla chips, peanuts, toffee).
  • BONY EDGES--Small, sharp bone fragments may work their way up through the gums during healing. These are not root pieces! If you feel a sharp edge, please call our office.
  • WORK--No heavy lifting or hard exertion for the first 48 hours, especially in hot weather.
  • If any unusual symptoms occur, please call the office.
  • Proper care following oral surgery will help with recovery and reduce the likelihood of complications!

After Root Canal Treatment:

  • PERMANENT RESTORATION--If you do not already have a crown on your tooth, please schedule an appointment to have the tooth prepared for a crown.  If you had a crown and an access opening was made through the crown, please schedule to have a permanent hard filling placed in this opening.  Do this soon, as the tooth is prone to fracture or new decay if you wait too long to place a protective crown on it.
  • DO NOT CHEW heavily on the treated tooth.  The tooth is susceptible to fracture until the permanent restoration is complete.
  • TEMPORARY FILLING--If your temporary filling comes out, please call our office.   Do not be concerned; it is normal for the temporary filling to wash out slightly during regular hygiene.   If your temporary filling leaks over time, bacteria from the saliva may recontaminate the root canal system and the canals may need to be retreated at additional expense.
  • PAIN--Do not be surprised if the tooth still hurts or is sore after treatment is completed.  The majority of teeth feel "normal" soon after the root canal is finished.  Sometimes, a tooth will continue to hurt due to chewing or tapping for a few days, or up to a couple of weeks. If your tooth is still sensitive to pressure or chewing after two weeks, please call our office for an appointment to re-examine the tooth.
  • MEDICATIONS--Most people can control discomfort following treatment with 800 mg of Ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, etc.) every 8 hours.  Your dentist will determine whether or not additional pain relievers are necessary.
  • EATING--Follow good nutritional habits.  Your tooth will have the best chance to heal properly if your diet contains sufficient vitamins and minerals.  Root canal therapy simply puts your tooth in the best position to heal; after that, it is up to your body's natural defenses to heal the area properly.
  • SUCCESS--Approximately 95% of all root canals are successful.  Five percent may require further treatment including apical surgery or extraction. If it is determined that your case has failed, DO NOT WAIT for the alternative.  A long-standing infection may lead to more serious systemic medical complications.  Long-standing or chronic infections are a burden to your body's overall immune system and should be addressed.
  • If any unusual symptoms occur, please call the office. 704-540-7600
  • Proper care following a root canal treatment will help with recovery and reduce the likelihood of complications!