Is It Safe to Drive After a Root Canal? 

Is It Safe to Drive After a Root Canal

If you have just had a root canal, the last thing you want to do is hop in a car and start driving. But, if you have an appointment or need to get somewhere, it’s important to know whether or not it is safe for you to drive after your procedure. Let’s take a look at what you need to know about driving after a root canal. 

The Effects of Anesthesia Following A Root Canal 

First, let’s talk about anesthesia. If your root canal was done with local anesthesia, then the effects should wear off within two hours after the procedure is complete.

However, if general anesthesia was used during your treatment, be sure to wait 12 hours before getting behind the wheel of a car.

This will give your body enough time to process the drugs and get back into equilibrium so that there are no lingering effects that could impair your ability to drive safely.

The Effects of Pain Medication Following A Root Canal 

If you were prescribed pain medication following your root canal procedure, then make sure you read the instructions on the label carefully before taking any doses.

Some pain medications can cause drowsiness, which could impede your ability to remain alert while driving. If this is the case for you, then make sure that someone else drives you home from the office and doesn’t allow you to get behind the wheel until after 24 hours have passed since taking your last dose of medication.    

Pain and Swelling After A Root Canal 

Root canals can often cause some level of pain and swelling in the mouth or jaw area where work was performed on the tooth.

This is completely normal and should improve over time as healing takes place in those areas. But try not to drive until these symptoms have subsided not only because it might be uncomfortable but because these symptoms could also affect how well you can focus while driving and how quickly you can react in emergency situations on the road.


All in all, it’s best practice not to drive right away following a root canal procedure especially if anesthesia or pain medication were used during treatment or if there is still some level of discomfort present afterward due to slight swelling or pain remaining around the tooth site.

To ensure that everyone stays safe on the roads, always wait until all side effects have worn off before getting behind the wheel again no matter how tempted we may be! Doing so will help keep everyone safe on our nation’s roads for years to come!