Root Canal Myths: What You Should Know

A root canal is a common dental procedure that can often save a severely damaged or infected tooth. But somehow long ago a stigma became associated with root canals, making people believe that it is a painful, grueling process. Many myths surround the root canal procedure that have since been debunked. Here’s what you should know about some of the common root canal myths. 

Myth 1: A root canal is painful.

As with any dental procedure, anesthesia is used to make sure you don’t feel any pain during a root canal. Local anesthesia is usually all that is required, unless the patient needs additional sedation due to anxiety or other reasons. Children or patients with special needs may need sedation to help them relax and be more cooperative during the procedure. Any discomfort you feel after the procedure should be easily managed with over the counter pain medication. 

Myth 2: The root canal procedure is long.

A root canal is a standard length dental procedure. Preparation and administration of anesthesia may take 30 minutes, and the procedure itself may take anywhere from 30-60 minutes. Your total time spent in the dental chair should be no more than 90 minutes. 

Myth 3: A root canal can make you sick. 

Somehow a myth developed that getting a root canal causes illness. There is no evidence to support this. If a tooth infection is the reason for the root canal procedure, the bacteria and infected tissue are completely cleaned out and removed from your mouth. You can’t develop any infection from the procedure. In fact, you are less likely to get sick after a root canal than if you let an infected tooth fester without a root canal. 

Myth 4: A root canal is pointless; the tooth will eventually fall out anyway.

A root canal can save your tooth and allow it to remain in your mouth. The average lifespan of a tooth that has had a root canal is 10-15 years. That’s at least a decade or more of natural function and appearance that allows you to avoid replacing the tooth. A tooth that receives a crown after a root canal may even last longer. Many people have found that their treated tooth has lasted for the rest of their life. 

Myth 5: A root canal is a permanent fix. 

In most cases a root canal will only need to be done once on a single tooth. However, in some cases a repeat root canal may be needed. This can occur if all of the root canal chambers in a tooth did not get filled or if a new canal develops. There are other factors that contribute to the need for a repeat root canal, such as poor dental hygiene. 

Myth 6: You need to see a specialist for a root canal. 

Most general dentists perform root canal procedures. An endodontist is a dentist with a specialization in endodontics, which is the study and treatment of the soft pulp inside of a tooth. Your dentist would only refer you to an endodontist for a special procedure, such as an apical surgery or complicated root canal. 

376 Dental Studio Provides Root Canals

The dentists at 376 Dental Studio have the ability and expertise to perform root canal procedures. As root canals are some of our most common dental procedures, we have plenty of experience. Now that you understand the myths and the facts about root canals, please allow us to save your tooth with this safe and effective procedure. 
Call 781-373-3068 or contact us today to schedule a consultation.