Endodontic treatment should not be painful

Our office is aware that not everyone loves root canals as much as we do. Rest assured we are focussed on making your endodontic experience as painless and stress-free as possible. Please inform us of any concerns you may have so we can customise the treatment to suite you best. There are many options available to you at the Richmond Endodontic Centre to reduce any stress or anxiety you may have. Please see the Sedation Section for more details or contact us directly.

For the average person the thought of pain does invoke a certain amount of stress and anxiety. There are three phases to consider when thinking about pain and endodontic treatment.

  • Pre-Treatment
  • Treatment
  • Post-Treatment

Anti-inflammatory medication (i.e. ibuprofen) and pain medication (i.e. acetaminophen) taken prior to your appointment will help minimise any potential after-appointment discomfort that may arise. It also helps reduce the sensitivity of your gums to the injection of local anaesthetic. Please refer to the pain medication hand-out for more details or contact us directly.

Immediate assistance is necessary if you are experiencing pain or swelling so severe that it prevents you from sleeping, eating, swallowing, or breathing. Contact our office, your dentist, or a physician.

It is a medical emergency if a swelling is large enough to close an eyelid or make swallowing/breathing difficult


Great care is taken to provide adequate local anaesthetic (a.k.a. "freezing") so no pain is felt during your root canal appointment. Topical anaesthetic is gently placed on your gums to "freeze" (numb) them prior to the administration of local anaesthetic. This will reduce the pinch of the local anaesthetic injection (i.e. the needle). The combination of topical anaesthetic and gentle injection techniques ensure you do not feel pain while being 'frozen'.

Recent advances in both local anaesthetics and injection techniques ensure no pain is felt during your root canal appointment


It is important to review and follow the post-operative instructions. The bone around a tooth reacts with inflammation to endodontic treatment. Unlike a bruised thumb that swells, the bone cannot enlarge when inflammation occurs. Instead pressure builds-up, making the tooth sensitive to bite or touch. Thus, it is prudent to follow the post-operative instructions to minimise the inflammatory reaction and resultant post-appointment pressure pain.

Our endodontists can customise the instructions if you are not able to take regular pain killers or anti-inflammatory medications

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