Myths About Root Canals

Root canals may be one of the most, if not the most, feared dental treatments. Unfortunately, however, much of this fear is rooted in myths about the procedure. We hope to clear up these misconceptions for you.

One of the most common incorrect beliefs about root canals is that they are tremendously painful procedures. That is simply not true. Advances in modern dentistry mean that the root canal is no more uncomfortable than having a cavity filled, according to most patients who receive this treatment. In fact, because the condition that warrants the root canal is often quite painful, like an abscess or deep cavity, root canals actually end up decreasing pain rather than causing it.

Patients may also think that a tooth can be extracted as an alternative to a root canal. While technically this is true, preserving the biological tooth is always preferable to removing it and replacing it with a prosthetic. Teeth should only be extracted whenever absolutely necessary, especially in the case of children in whom the mouth and smile are still developing. Removing a tooth in children can cause alignment problems and other issues. Your children’s dentist can discuss some of the other consequences of tooth loss in children.

There is also a school of thought – albeit an inaccurate one – that root canals cause illness elsewhere in the body. However, this belief originates in 1920s era “research” that was not nearly as robust as the protocols used today. No study completed under modern standards has found a link between root canals and systemic disease in the human body.

If your child is in need of a root canal and feeling apprehensive about the procedure, talk with a children’s dentist about how to prepare your child for the treatment. Additionally, ask if the dentist uses any special techniques or instruments for root canals on pediatric patients.

Don’t let myths about root canals influence your perceptions about the treatment or create anxiety in your child if a root canal is recommended. Get the true facts, and you’ll learn that a root canal isn’t really such an unpleasant experience after all.

Contact our office today to schedule an appointment or cleaning!

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