Root Canal Awareness Week is March 25-31 this year, and we’ll be debunking a popular root canal myth every day this week. MYTH #1: Root canal treatment is painful. Root…

Root Canal 2012
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Root Canal Myth #1: Treatment is Painful

Root Canal Awareness Week is March 25-31 this year, and we’ll be debunking a popular root canal myth every day this week.

MYTH #1: Root canal treatment is painful.

Root Canal.

Hearing the term probably makes you wince. For most people, the first word that comes to mind when they think of “root canal” is pain – agonizing, excruciating pain. For this reason, many people hesitate if they think they might be in need of a root canal. However, what many people don’t know is that root canals aren’t as torturous as they’re made out to be.

Therapy to Relieve Root Canal Pain

Root canals have been given a bad reputation as being extremely painful procedures, and this is why many people fear getting one. However, this is rarely the case. Root canals, officially called root canal therapy, are actually performed to relieve pain. The majority of patients claim that they did not feel any pain at all during the actual procedure.

Root canal therapy is recommended when an untreated cavity spreads to the pulp of the tooth and causes an infection. This infection is what causes most of the pain, not the actual treatment. During the treatment, the endodontist (or general dentist) will numb the area around the affected tooth so that you only feel very minor pain if any at all. If you are still nervous, however, you may be able to request sedation to ensure that you won’t feel a thing.

Most people continue to feel better after the procedure, as well. There is still some pain, as with most procedures that require incisions, but the pain is comparatively better than the agony before the procedure was performed.

Where It Started

According to the American Association of Endodontics, the idea that root canals are extremely painful comes from earlier methods of root canal treatment. However, with the latest technology and anesthetics, root canal therapy is nearly as painless as receiving a filling. In fact, a recent survey even showed that past recipients of a root canal are 6 times more likely to describe it as “painless” than those who have never undergone the procedure before.

A root canal treatment is not as scary as it sounds. However, if you are in need of therapy and are still nervous about it, you can always talk to your endodontist or dentist. He or she may have some helpful suggestions for calming your nerves and making you feel comfortable.

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See the rest of the series:

MYTH #1: Root canal treatment is painful.

MYTH #2: Root canals cause illness.

MYTH #3: They are unnecessary if you’re not in pain.

MYTH #4: Root canals are a lengthy process.

MYTH #5: It is better to just pull the tooth.

12 Comments
  1. Nice read, I just passed this onto a colleague who was doing a little research on that. And he actually bought me lunch as I found it for him smile Thus let me rephrase that: Thank you for lunch!

  2. Not only root canal treatment but all most all sort of treatment related to teeth gives much more pain to us. During the treatment it gives less pain due to the pain killer injection taken. But after few hours the pain increases.

  3. Many people think that root canal therapy is very much painful. However it’s not so because Arlington dentist has proved that anyone can easily opt for root canal therapy without hesitations and fear.

  4. Pain experienced during a root canal treatment can now be lessened with the latest tools and medications available for the dentists to use and for the patients’ benefits. Angie is right. After having a shot of anesthesia, you would not feel any pain from then on.

  5. I’ve had several root canals and the worst part(s) for me were the numbing shot and the numb face afterward. It’s really not a big deal.

  6. It is nice to know that most people do not have any pain during the root canal. I did not have such luck, I was in shear agony for over an hour during the end of the procedure my attempts to inform the dentist was ignored. When I informed the dentist he said why did you not tell me? I was unable to speak with several objects in my mouth and it was my fault?

  7. There are a number of persons that believe that getting a root canal is painful; however, it is not. Because of the advanced equipment that is used in dentistry today, you will be able to get a root canal without experiencing any type of pain.

  8. Maybe some people had a bad experienced doing root canal treatment.Is possible that the doctor who performed the procedure was not so experienced.I made such a treatment a few years and did not have any pain.

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