A trip to the dentist is far from most people’s version of an ideal day. Thankfully, advances in medical technology have made more and more dental procedures easy, fast, and relatively pain-free than ever before! Even with all of these advances, simply hearing some medical procedures named is enough to send a chill up many people’s spines. Root canals definitely top the list of things of dental procedures that patients are afraid to have. But today, we’re going to assuage your fears! There really is little reason to dread this safe, routine procedure and we’re going to dispel some common myths to help you see that the only thing to fear, is the fear of dental work itself.
MYTH: Root canals are incredibly painful.
FACT: While this may have been true in the past, modern technology has made root canals nearly pain-free!
Many people associate the term “root canal” with ideas of pain and agony, but this simply isn’t the case. Long gone are the days where dental work is done without adequate medication and novocaine to help make procedures easier, and root canals are no exception to the rule. You should feel almost nothing during most dental procedures, and if you do experience pain, your dentist can increase their use of numbing agents. In fact, the procedure will actually leave you feeling better than you did before because the root canal will eradicate the source of your painful, sore tooth!
MYTH: Root canals lead to more infections than they clear up.
FACT: Root canals are safe, studied medical procedures with no link to other illnesses.
For many years, people believed that root canals could cause infections elsewhere in the mouth or body. No scientific data has ever been produced to support this claim, however. One possible idea to explain this myth is that people who have had one infected tooth are more likely to develop another, but the act of having a root canal will not cause this to happen.
MYTH: A tooth in need of a root canal should just be extracted.
FACT: It is always better to keep your natural teeth when possible.
If you can avoid replacing a natural tooth, it is highly recommended that you do. While there are many great options out there for tooth replacements, nothing can quite exactly replicate the look, feel, and function of your natural teeth. Endodontic treatment is usually very successful and there is little reason to believe a root canal-treated tooth won’t last a lifetime. Additionally, placing an implant or bridge requires more time, work, and money and will likely be required when tampering with existing teeth.
We’ve said goodbye to the days when root canals were painful, scary experiences. While it’s normal to have some anxiety about any medical procedure, facts and knowledge are the best defense against your fears. Never hesitate to ask your dentist any questions you may have about whatever procedure you’re having done!