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Root Canal Therapy – Goodlettsville, TN

The Solution to Severe Dental Pain

When bacteria is able to reach the interior of your tooth (called the dental pulp), it can become infected and cause quite a bit of pain. Why? Because this is where the nerve of the tooth is located! In the past, teeth with this kind of problem would just need to be removed. Thanks to advanced technology and modern techniques, Dr. McClain can save them with root canal therapy in Goodlettsville. Thanks to the many advancements in dentistry, this procedure is nothing like its reputation, and it’s actually one of the best tools we have for relieving dental pain! Give our office a call or read on to learn more.

Why Choose Goodlettsville Smiles for Root Canal Therapy?

  • Provides Fast Pain-Relief In Just One Appointment
  • Can Save Severely Damaged Teeth From Extraction
  • Sedation Available To Ensure A Comfortable Experience

Do I Need Root Canal Therapy?

a woman holding her cheek due to severe toothache

Not every toothache will require root canal therapy to relieve or treat it. This procedure is primarily performed on pearly whites that are either damaged, decayed, or even infected and can’t be treated with less invasive options (i.e., tooth-colored fillings or dental crowns). This treatment may be necessary if you’re struggling with a severe toothache that’s gone for more than a day, pain when chewing, inflamed or visibly red gums, sensitivity to extreme temperatures, or a pimple-like bump on the gums near the affected tooth. Be sure to schedule an emergency appointment with your dentist as soon as possible if you notice any of these symptoms.

The Root Canal Process

Model of the inside of the tooth before root canal therapy

Contrary to popular belief, root canals are specifically designed to alleviate discomfort and save as much of the healthy tooth as possible. The process itself should also be pain-free, as our team will first completely numb your mouth with a local anesthetic before starting any work. This will ensure you remain comfortable and pain-free throughout your visit. We may also provide you with nitrous oxide sedation, which can both help you relax and lower your body’s ability to register discomfort.

To begin the process, Dr. McClain will make a tiny hole in your enamel so that she can reach the pulp of your tooth and remove all infected tissues from inside. She’ll then clean and disinfect the area to ensure it’s free of any harmful bacteria before filling it up with a biocompatible material. Once filled, our team will likely cover the tooth with a dental crown to protect and strengthen it.  

The Benefits of Getting a Root Canal

a family smiling outside in Goodlettsville

Root canal therapy is a completely safe and effective dental treatment that can help avoid more serious oral health complications in the future. Most patients typically expect to appreciate a variety of benefits with this procedure, including:

  • Virtually pain-free treatment: Unlike in the past, root canal therapy is painless, as the majority of patients find it no worse than getting a standard tooth filling.
  • Tooth preservation: Preserving your natural tooth instead of removing it can save you both time, money, and hassle from needing to replace it.
  • A healthy & pain-free smile: By cleaning out the damaged and infected particles that are causing discomfort, you’ll be able to enjoy a comfortable and healthy smile again.

Root Canal FAQs

How Long Does It Take to Recover from a Root Canal?

While everyone bounces back a little bit differently, most patients will be able to go back to work as soon as the day after their procedure. You might be a little bit tender for a few days, but if you take either prescribed or OTC pain medicine as directed you should feel comfortable enough to go back to normal.

The only exception is if your work involves heavy physical labor. Exercise can potentially draw blood flow away from the mouth and delay healing, so it’s a good idea to get some rest for a few days after the procedure. That being the case, you may want to take the next two or three days off of work.

Can I Eat Before a Root Canal?

Eating isn’t inherently a problem when it comes to root canal treatment, so in many cases you should be able to eat beforehand. This can even be ideal, as your mouth will likely still be numb after the procedure is complete and will make it difficult to eat.

However, if you’re being sedated for the procedure, you may need to fast for a few hours to reduce your risk of nausea after the procedure. You should also abstain from drinking alcohol for 24 hours beforehand, as it may interfere with the anesthetic used for the treatment. 

Do I Need Antibiotics Before or After My Root Canal?

Typically, it isn’t necessary to take an antibiotic before or after your root canal treatment. This is only recommended in circumstances where the patient is unusually susceptible to infection—in these cases, extra precaution may need to be taken to ensure that the bacteria in the tooth do not spread. If this is the case for you, we will be sure to discuss the matter with you while reviewing your medical history.

What Happens If You Wait Too Long for a Root Canal?

The body fights infections with white blood cells that travel through the bloodstream. Unfortunately, however, they’re unable to reach the interior of the teeth via this method. That means that toothaches caused by infection won’t fade on their own.

If you don’t treat this kind of tooth with a root canal, the problem will only get worse. Eventually, the bacteria may destroy the root of the tooth and spread elsewhere in the mouth. For this reason, it’s critically important that you get a root canal when we recommend that you need one.

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