Getting To The Root Of The Problem: Dispelling Myths About Root Canals

Root canals are often viewed as the most dreaded dental procedure that anyone can experience. However, there is so much misinformation out there that should be dispelled.Here are just a few things to keep in mind so that you can understand the truth and benefits of a root canal.

Myth #1: Root canals are extremely pricey

Unfortunately, any dental work costs money. However, you can't put a price on saving a tooth and maintaining a healthy smile. At the end of the day, a root canal is actually cheaper than having a tooth pulled or getting a bridge or implant. The cost also depends on the severity of the root canal, the amount of treatments that are involved, or whether you see your regular dentist or a specialist.

Myth #2: Pain is completely gone immediately after a root canal

Obviously, the purpose of a root canal is to alleviate pain associated with an unhealthy tooth. Yet, you will probably experience some sensitivity after the root canal during chewing. Pain killers help, of course, but it can be a couple of weeks before you feel completely pain free. If pain persists past this amount of time, consult your dentist since this could indicate a deeper issue. Some may not feel as much pain as others, but it depends on the severity of the infection and complexity of treatment required.

Myth #3: A root canal kills the tooth

The purpose of a root canal is to clean the inside of the tooth. Its purpose is not to kill a tooth. For this reason, the root canal is usually followed by crown in order to protect the tooth from breakage and complete death of the root and loss or discoloration of the tooth.

Myth #4: Extraction is the only alternative for a failed root canal

Actually, the success of a root canal is quite high, so completely losing a tooth after a root canal is rare. However, if the root canal does fail (this usually occurs for patients who have had their procedure done a long time ago), there is usually the option of retreating the tooth. This can be done by disinfecting each canal, or possibly only require a microsurgery for a particular canal within the tooth.

Root canals can be seen as a plausible treatment for an unhealthy tooth, and not as an experience to fear and dread. Through modern technology and anesthesia, a root canal can be a beneficial and relatively pain free experience.