Thousands of people get root canal treatments from their dentist in Australia every year. Even though the procedure is one of the most common, there are still many mistruths in the community. Those mistruths could stop people who desperately need a root canal from getting one.
Here Clear Choice Dental attempt to dispel some of the more common myths about root canals.
- The Treatment is Painful
There’s always an audible groan from at least one person in a group when you utter those dreaded words ‘root canal’. The truth is, the procedure is not as painful as you may think. Your dentist uses a local anaesthetic to numb your tooth and the surrounding area. If you are particularly nervous and think it will be painful, you can also talk to your dentist about nitrous oxide gas to calm your nerves.
- No Pain, No Need for a Root Canal
You don’t have to experience pain in your tooth to need a root canal. Sometimes, there’s an infection or damage in the pulp of your tooth that calls for a root canal – even if the pain is not a symptom.
A damaged tooth with something that looks like a pimple is a common sign. That pimple is often a fistula, which is tissue that is draining pus from your infection. That infection can get worse without seeking treatment from your dentist.
- I’ll Need to Get the Tooth Out, So I Don’t Need a Root Canal
Sometimes, a tooth looks so damaged that you think there’s no other option but to remove it. Believe it or not, dentists can be miracle workers from time to time. A root canal can be the lifeboat your tooth desperately needs, and can ultimately end up saving your tooth. In many – if not most – cases, a root canal will solve the problem without the need for extraction.
- I’ll Lose My Tooth and Tooth Roots
A root canal may have the word ‘root’ in it, but that doesn’t mean you always lose your tooth roots. A root canal involves cleaning and shaping the inside of your tooth. Your dentist removes your tooth pulp and nerve tissues, as well as part of the root if it contains bacteria. The goal is to save your tooth and as much root as possible, not to remove it unnecessarily.
Root canals may not sound like the most desirable dental procedure, but they can be a lifeline your mouth desperately needs. If you’re not sure what’s involved, or you’re not sure if the horror stories are correct, then talk to your dentist. They will be able to put your mind at ease.