Post-Anesthesia: What to Expect After a Mouth-Numbing Dental Procedure

Dentist with a patient

Dental appointments rarely, if ever, make it onto someone’s Top 10 Most Fun Things to Do list. Even we, here at Creekside Endodontics in Colorado, know that you might sometimes dread meeting us – as such, we exert all efforts to make our procedures as smooth and painless as possible.

Feelings of anxiety about upcoming dental procedures are totally normal. In fact, about 30 to 40 million people have dental anxiety. Endodontists understand this feeling in our patients, but we must also keep in mind the importance of oral health. This is why we offer sedation dentistry in Littleton, CO. That way, you can relax while still getting the necessary oral procedures.

Apart from that, the use of anesthetics has also been a long-standing practice to eliminate the discomfort of certain procedures. But, since not all dental procedures require anesthesia, you might not be familiar with how it works.

How Long Will the Effects of Anesthesia Last?

So, you’ve successfully undergone an oral procedure that needed anesthetics or sedation. Once it’s done, your mouth will remain numb for a couple more hours. Sometimes you won’t feel anything for up to five hours. The actual duration depends on a few factors:

  • The dose

The higher the dose of anesthesia, the longer its numbing effects will last. Of course, the amount administered will depend on the type of procedure being performed and the size of the area that needs treatment. A root canal treatment, for example, will require more anesthesia than a simple tooth extraction.

  • Your metabolism

The effect of anesthetics vary from person-to-person, and one of the main differences lies in one’s metabolism. If you have a fast metabolism, the numbing effects of anesthesia will not last as long as if you have a slow metabolism.

  • The presence of infection

Anesthetics are less effective on an infected tooth. Infections cause tissues to become more acidic, and anesthetics are affected by pH levels. So, if you have infected or inflamed tooth, we might use more anesthesia to keep you comfortable.

What Can You Expect After Your Mouth Goes Numb

Because you won’t be feeling anything, you have to be conscious about biting harder than normal in different areas of your mouth. Though you won’t feel it while you’re under anesthesia, you’ll certainly feel if you’ve bitten into your cheek or other areas of your mouth, once the anesthesia wears off.  So, be careful about biting too hard while the numbing is still in effect.

Speaking of biting, it might not be the best idea to eat a large, heavy meal until feeling is restored in your mouth. If you get hungry while your mouth is numb, try consuming smoothies and other soft foods. Yogurt, oatmeal, mashed potatoes, and ice cream will do the trick. If you want a more substantial meal, try a soup with morsels of meat or a hearty stew.

Our best advice? Don’t stress too much about the numbness you’ll feel while under anesthesia. After all, it’s only for a couple of hours. After that, you will be able to enjoy all the types of food you want, as long as they’re not bad for your teeth, of course.

Want a More Pleasant Dental Procedure?

At Creekside Endodontics, we adhere to the highest standards of endodontic care. Whatever endodontic procedure you need, whether it’s a root canal or something else, you can trust that you’ll get the best and most comfortable services from us. You’ll have your bright and healthy smile back, in no time.

Schedule your appointment today.