5 Things To Be Aware Of Before Your Root Canal Treatment

5 Things To Be Aware Of Before Your Root Canal Treatment

root-canal-treatment-therapy-phoenix-azPreparation is like power tools – you can get things done without it, but why would you want to? Understanding what may happen when referred to an endodontist for root canal therapy can make the difference between approaching the experience with anxiety or with confidence, maybe even excitement (yes, really!).

Talk with your dental treatment team about the five aspects of root canal therapy listed below before your treatment is scheduled. Do, and you’ll be prepared for most parts of the procedure. You will also be ready to play an active part in your own healing.

5 Things You Should Know Before Root Canal Therapy Begins

1. If root canal therapy is the best choice for you. Your endodontist can provide a clear treatment plan for your failing natural tooth. They will perform a preliminary examination and discuss whether root canal therapy can save your tooth, or whether another option is a better fit.

2. Do you need to take antibiotics before your therapy begins? Many teeth needing root canals are infected from decay or injury. Your practitioner may prescribe oral antibiotics to fight any active infections.

3. Post-procedure instructions from your endodontist. You will go home with a sheet of instructions, including what foods to eat, how to care for your tooth after the root canal, and activities to avoid for the first few days.

4. What to do if you have pain after your root canal therapy. Root canals usually relieve pain rather than causing it. Sharp pain after a root canal may indicate more treatment is needed. Your endodontist will provide a number to call (both during and after working hours) if you experience pain and need to be examined immediately.

5. When to schedule follow-ups with your endodontist and dentist. Your specific damage and treatment may need a follow-up with your endodontist. Otherwise, once the tooth treated with root canal therapy has begun healing, you will visit your general dentist for a crown or other restoration atop your root canal, ensuring years of protection for your natural tooth.

“We equip our patients with the knowledge to feel comfortable and informed before root canal therapy,” says Dr. Jacqueline S. Allen, who practices with the Phoenix Endodontics Group. “Understanding what to expect improves healing and the procedure’s success.”


Team Spotlight: Dr. James Wolcott

Team Spotlight: Dr. James Wolcott

Learn more about our endodontic care team at Phoenix Endodontic Group in our Team Spotlight

Dr. James Wolcott


As we embrace the festive spirit of December, we’re thrilled to shine the light on one of our exceptional endodontists at Phoenix Endodontic Group. This month, let’s get to know one of the top endodontists in our endodontic practice – Dr. James F. Wolcott, IV.


We had a Q&A with Dr. Wolcott:

Full Name:Dr. James F. Wolcott, IV

Job Title: Endodontist

Educational Background:

      • Dental School: University of Colorado, Boulder, CO
      • General Practice Residency (GPR): University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN
      • Endodontic Program: Einstein Medical Center, Philadelphia, PA

First job in healthcare: Orderly at a nursing home in North Carolina during my junior year of high school.

Why you became an Endodontist: I have a knack for working in my mind’s eye.

Do you have any hobbies? Karting with my son.

Hobbies: Enjoying karting adventures with my son.

Culinary Delight: Chilaquiles

Literary Favorite: Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas

Top Movie Pick: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

Guilty Pleasure: Indulging in the nostalgia of 80’s hair metal music.

Root Canal Aftercare Tips

Root Canal Aftercare Tips

Root canal treatment of a damaged or infected natural tooth can enable it to last a lifetime. However, like most treatments, you as the patient must do your part to ensure your procedure is successful.

Proper root canal treatment aftercare can be divided into things you should do immediately after the procedure, during recovery week, and things you should do over the long run. Let’s take a look at each set of instructions so you’ll be well prepared when you have your root canal treatment.

Aftercare Tips: Immediately After Your Root Canal Treatment

Do not eat for several hours after your root canal. This allows the local anesthesia to wear off – you will avoid biting injuries due to numbness.

Do not smoke after your root canal treatment. Smoking tobacco impedes healing.

Make sure you have antibiotics prescribed by your endodontist. This allows you to continue to fight any infection in your tooth.

Keep the endodontist’s contact information handy in case there is post-procedure pain. You should NOT have excruciating pain after a root canal – if you do, call the office so they can look into what is happening.

Aftercare Tips: The Week After Your Root Canal Treatment

Do not bite down using the tooth that received the root canal. Until you’ve had a permanent restoration (usually a crown) placed, you could lose your temporary filling by putting biting pressure on the tooth.

Stick to soft foods while your mouth is healing. You can choose from delicious options that include scrambled eggs, smoothies, yogurt, pasta, noodle dishes, mashed potatoes, meatloaf, hummus, cooked vegetables, or sorbets.

Ease back into your regular activities. You can go to work in a day or two, and start exercising a few days after that. When in doubt, don’t push things; let your body guide recovery.

Aftercare Tips:  When Your Root Canal Treatment Is Finished

Make sure you get the permanent restoration (usually a crown) placed over your root canal. This one step is critical to protecting the root canal and cannot be skipped.

Continue to brush and floss daily. You can care for your tooth that received the root canal as you would any natural tooth after the healing stage is complete.

Visit your general dentist regularly. They will monitor your overall oral health and can refer you to an endodontist if you need another root canal or a root canal retreatment.

“Most of the steps that we ask our patients to take after a root canal treatment are simple, but they should be followed closely,” says Dr. Jacqueline S. Allen, who practices with Phoenix Endodontics Group. “We are happy to discuss how to follow aftercare instructions and why they are important.”

Team Spotlight: Ana-Alicia Salas

Team Spotlight: Ana-Alicia Salas

Learn more about our endodontic care team at Phoenix Endodontic Group in our Team Spotlight.

Our November Team Spotlight features office administrator and dental assistant, Ana-Alicia Salas. Ani manages both administrative tasks in our endodontic practice and assists the doctors with endodontic procedures. She is a valued team member at Phoenix Endodontic Group and we are thrilled share a little more about Ani.

We had a Q&A with Ani:

Full Name: Ana-Alicia Salas

Job Title: Office Administrator/Dental Assistant

What’s the day-to-day of your role like?: ? Following up with our referring offices to ensure we are providing the best service to both their office and patients.

What are 3 words to describe Phoenix Endodontic Group?: Committed, Friendly, Attentive.

Before working at Phoenix Endodontic Group, what was the most unusual or interesting job you’ve ever had?: I’ve always worked at Phoenix Endodontic Group

First Job: Phoenix Endodontic Group

Do you have any hobbies?: Reading, shopping and playing with my nephew.

Favorite food: Pizza

Pet(s): Boxer: Banner; Mixed Terrier: Coco

Favorite book: The Summer I Turned Pretty

Favorite movie: Love Rosie

Something on your bucket list: Going to Rome

Guilty pleasure: People Watching

Find Out How Root Canal Therapy Has Advanced Over the Years

Find Out How Root Canal Therapy Has Advanced Over the Years


When times are tough, folks yearn for the “good old days.” However, most of us wouldn’t really want to travel back in time for complex dental work. For endodontic procedures such as root canal therapy, patient outcomes and happiness have improved immensely, on the heels of improvements in technology and treatment techniques.

Here’s a brief list of just some ways  root canal therapy has gotten better over recent generations.

Advancements In Root Canal Therapy

1. Diagnostic imaging, for better treatment. When root canals were first performed, dentists didn’t have even basic imaging technology to guide their work. Today, treatments can be pinpointed with Cone Beam Computed Tomography, allowing endodontists a full 3-D view of your teeth.

2. Local anesthetics allow a comfortable treatment. The earliest root canal treatments happened before the advent of anesthesia. Today’s patients have largely pain-free experiences through local anesthetics. Further, if dental anxiety is an issue, sedation dentistry can provide a gentle solution.

3. Microsurgical tools allow precision canal cleaning and shaping. The first root-canal shaping tool was developed by Edwin Maynard in the mid-1800s, created from a watch spring. Today’s precise tools for cleaning and shaping infected root canals are developed task-specifically, continually refined, and always crafted with your teeth in mind.

4. New cleansing technologies ensure more complete treatment. Top endodontic practices now use the GentleWave Procedure, a root canal treatment that uses fluid dynamics to ensure superior canal cleaning. The result is a faster, less invasive root canal with minimal pain and rapid healing.

5. Restorations ensure root canal treatments remain successful. Early root canal treatments were not followed by the placement of restorations such as a permanent crown. This critical step has hugely enhanced the long-term success rate of root canals, allowing a properly cared for root canal treatment to often last a lifetime.

 At Phoenix Endodontic Group, practitioners use all our available advances to provide state-of-the-art treatment.

“When you enter one of our treatment rooms, every aspect of your root canal treatment has been evaluated and selected to provide you with the safest, most comfortable treatment possible. Our goal is preserving your natural teeth, so you can enjoy them for a lifetime,” says Dr. Jacqueline S. Allen, founder of the practice.


Team Spotlight: Kevin Conroy

Team Spotlight: Kevin Conroy

Learn more about our endodontic care team at Phoenix Endodontic Group in our Team Spotlight.

Our October Team Spotlight features Operations Director, Kevin Conroy. Kevin is our go to for all administrative areas of the practice: bookkeeping. AP/AR, HR, scheduling, handles clinic facility operations and more. He is the glue that furthers Phoenix Endodontic Group moving toward our goal of being known as the best Endodontic Specialty clinic in the state of Arizona.

We had a Q&A with Kevin:

Full Name:Kevin G. Conroy

Job Title: Operations Director

What’s the day-to-day of your role like?: ? I manage all administrative areas of the practice: bookkeeping. AP/AR, HR, scheduling, etc. I also handle clinic facility operations and planning new equipment purchases.

What are 3 words to describe Phoenix Endodontic Group?: Patient-Focused, State-of-the-art, Leader in Endodontic Specialty in the State

Before working at Phoenix Endodontic Group, what was the most unusual or interesting job you’ve ever had?: I was a security guard for concerts and events in Washington DC during my college years.

First Job: I was a dishwasher in a Chinese Restaurant in Martinsville, VA.

Do you have any hobbies?: Reading history books, and hiking when the weather is right.

Favorite food: Italian Food

Favorite book: “The Devil’s Chessboard”

Favorite movie: The Outlaw Josey Wales

Something on your bucket list:Taking my three grandsons on a trip to Ireland (when they are old enough).

Guilty pleasure: Enjoying the quiet in the early morning drinking coffee outside (weather permitting).