A root canal is one of the most dreaded dental procedures patients face, and many patients will go to great lengths to avoid it. Root canals can be scary because they involve filling a space deep within the roots of your teeth. However, the bad reputation of a root canal may be undeserved and overrated. The American Association of Endodontists reports that more than 15 million root canals are performed each year in the United States, and most people leave the procedure in less pain and satisfied with the results. Here are 5 misconceptions about root canals and why they aren't true after all.
Root Canals Cause Excruciating Pain
Root canals have a reputation for being painful procedures, but the truth is that the purpose of a root canal is to relieve pain or prevent pain from occurring in the first place. When a root canal is performed, the dental professional will numb the entire area being treated, If you are still feeling pain even after you've been given numbing medication, alert your dentist and ask for more medication.
There Is No Such Thing as a Root Canal Specialist
There are actually dental professionals who work specifically in the pulp or soft tissue of the teeth. They are called endodontists, and they are required to complete a two year training program in addition to dental education.
If you need a root canal, your dentist may advise you to visit an endodontist who can use experience and training to treat your specific root related issues.
Root Canals Cause Disease
It is a common misconception that treatment for root canals can open the tooth up to harmful bacteria that can cause infection, heart disease and kidney disease. This is a myth. Today's root canal professionals use safe, clean, sterilized equipment, and the treatment for a cavity in the roots of the teeth is to remove infection rather than cause it.
Some people claim that bacteria introduced through root canals can cause neurological issues, but you put yourself in danger of brain infection when an infection in your tooth goes untreated.
You Don't Need a Root Canal if You Don't Have Pain
If you have a cavity in the roots of your teeth, there is no reason to wait until you are in pain to get treatment. You don't need to be experiencing discomfort to get a root canal. If your dentist or endodontist recommends that you get a root canal, it is a good idea to go ahead and do it before the problem gets worse and you are seeking emergency care.
Pulling a Tooth Is Better Than Having a Root Canal
Extracting a tooth is typically a last resort, and most dentists will exhaust all other options before pulling your teeth.
When one or more of your teeth are extracted, it changes the entire structure of your mouth. Certain foods can become more difficult to eat, and your remaining teeth can shift. Extraction can also end up costing you much more in terms of time and money than a root canal would. When a tooth is extracted, you will typically need to return to the dentist for an implant or a bridge that may be needed to anchor your other teeth. This is an expensive procedure, and you will find that an artificial tooth will never perform as well as a natural tooth would.
You are probably never going to enjoy getting a root canal, but this procedure is not the torture it is made out to be. When you are facing a root canal, educate yourself with the facts. Visit websites like http://www.cretzmeyer.com for more information.