It’s hard for anyone to hear the word “root canal” and not cringe. The words alone project an image of in-depth surgery, instruments poking at your mouth, and gratuitous pain for days afterward. Even though it’s done to save a tooth, some people would rather deal with the implications of a rotted canine.
However, there really is no reason to be afraid of a root canal. We’re going to jump into the three biggest reasons why you should not be so anxious about getting a root canal to put your mind at ease. First, let’s quickly define what a root canal actually is.
What is a Root Canal?
Beneath the white enamel of your teeth and the ultra-dense dentin layer, there sits a soft kind of tissue known as the pulp. The pulp tissue contains blood vessels, connective tissues, and nerves that help your teeth grow during development. An adult tooth does not necessarily need pulp anymore because it can survive by using the tissues around it for nourishment. The pulp is essentially the leftover materials from the growth stages.
Sometimes abscesses or inflamed ligaments in the gums can enter the root of the tooth and cause infected or inflamed pulp. This is often extremely painful and dangerous for the rest of the teeth in one’s mouth as the infection can spread. A root canal or endodontic treatment is essentially the process of removing an extremely diseased tooth in order to prevent the spreading of disease. It is also done to scoop out the infected pulp to save the tooth itself without full removal. Millions of teeth are saved through root canals every year.
These three facts about root canals may shock you!
1. You might not experience any pain whatsoever.
Like we mentioned above, when people think of root canals, they think of pain. It makes sense why, of course. Sometimes there is pain associated with root canals. However, there’s a good chance you won’t experience any pain whatsoever.
Since the procedure for root canals has improved and changed in recent years, the approach taken often results in little pain. Before performing the surgery, your endodontist will inject a numbing anesthetic around the tooth, which at most will feel like a light prick to the gums. From there, you won’t feel much else.
2. Post-surgery pain isn’t that long lasting.
Sure, pain in surgery probably isn’t that bad. But what about afterward? Luckily, you won’t really have to worry about that either.
You may experience some discomfort after the procedure that over-the-counter pain medication can treat. You’ll more than likely be able to go back to your normal routine the next day.
3. Your tooth will be rescued!
Root canals save so many teeth. It’s really surprising how intense the myths about this procedure are when the results are so incredible!
How was our list of reasons not to be anxious about getting a root canal? Tell us about your experience with root canal procedures in the comments below!