5 Root Canal Myths Debunked

It’s the most terrifying of all dental treatments.

Root canals are dreaded by patients more than almost any other dental procedure there is, but so much of that fear is based on widely believed myths that give this treatment a bad name.

Because a root canal can mean the difference between keeping your natural tooth or needing a restoration, your friends at Charlotte Dentistry want to set the record straight about this essential tooth-saving restorative procedure!

Why Do You Need A Root Canal?

We perform root canals to save infected teeth. When bacteria enter a tooth, it can infect the dental pulp, which is the soft inner area of the tooth, or the nerves that live under the pulp.

After we numb the area, we remove the infected tissue to keep it from spreading or returning. Then we gently clean and sanitize the area, pack it with a material to seal it, and then cover the tooth with a dental crown to protect it from future damage.

In many cases, you might need a root canal if you’re experiencing:

  • Increased tooth sensitivity to hot or cold foods and drinks
  • An intense, throbbing toothache that can extend into your jaw
  • Tooth discoloration or swelling of the gums around a tooth

Myth #1: Root Canals Are Excruciating

Maybe this was true long ago, but thanks to modern technology and techniques, it’s simply not the case anymore.

In fact, the kind of toothache that often precedes a root canal will be far more painful than any dental procedure! These days, because of our numbing technique and dental sedation options, a root canal is as comfortable and simple as filling a cavity. 

Myth #2: Root Canals Create Health Problems

This myth mainly stems from research nearly a century ago that’s long since been debunked. There is no scientific evidence that root canals cause health problems or diseases. In fact, without getting a root canal, the infection inside a tooth can spread to your bloodstream and put you at serious risk of widespread health complications.

This procedure doesn’t create health problems, but rather, it helps prevent them.

Myth #3: Removing A Tooth Is A Better Option

An extraction is always a last resort because we want you to keep your natural teeth for as long as possible. So no, removing an infected tooth is not always the best option, especially when we’re able to save it with a root canal procedure.

Pulling the tooth would only create a longer, more complicated and costly treatment plan because you’d need to have it replaced with some type of restoration or implant.

Myth #4: Root Canals Are Only Needed If You’re In Pain

While a throbbing toothache is a common sign of infection, it’s not true in every single case. That’s because you won’t feel any pain if a tooth is already dead. But if you visit us for routine checkups, we can examine your mouth carefully and spot this kind of problem, recommending a root canal if it’s needed.

Myth #5: Root Canals Require Multiple Appointments

The most common reason you would need to return after a root canal is to have a permanent dental crown placed, so in most cases, your treatment is complete after only two appointments. You’d need to return for multiple appointments, on the other hand, if you didn’t get a root canal to treat an infected tooth because lack of care gives the infection time to spread and to create other complications with your oral health. 

If you’re experiencing pain in your mouth or are having a hard time chewing, don’t put off the treatment you need to protect your oral and overall health. Call Charlotte Dentistry right away at 704-285-0846 to schedule your appointment in Charlotte, NC. We can perform a comfortable root canal to save your tooth!