Root canals are a method of treatment that dentists have at their disposal that can make a big impact on your oral health. Rather than entirely losing a tooth, a root canal can keep your tooth right where it is, even if it's badly infected, decayed, or damaged. If you think you might need a root canal and are worried about it, here are three common myths that you shouldn't let get under your skin.
Many people are afraid of the idea of getting a root canal, thinking that it will hurt terribly. The reality of the situation, though, is that you're not going to feel a thing once the procedure is underway.
Root canals are somewhat similar to having a tooth drilled for decay. Just like you would if you were having a cavity drilled, your dentist will ensure that you have adequate pain relief to prevent you from feeling anything during the procedure. This local anesthesia will numb the area entirely, so other than vibrations traveling through your head, you're not going to notice anything about the procedure itself.
Another concern some people have is that they'll be in a great deal of pain after the procedure until they heal. However, this is also untrue.
To start, your dentist will likely give you some medication to take home, or at least a prescription to get filled. This medication, when taken properly, will keep your pain away until you're finished healing.
However, the full truth here is that when you get a root canal, the nerves of the affected tooth are removed. These nerves are pain receptors and tell your brain when a tooth may be in danger, which you perceive as pain. Without nerve endings, there's no way for the tooth to send pain signals at all, so you may not even need pain relievers.
Finally, some people believe that root canals are a complex process that requires multiple visits to the dentist's office. For most people, though, root canals will only require a few trips to the dentist's office.
Your first trip will be when you find out if you need a root canal. Your dentist examines your teeth, and if they find a severe problem and determine you need this procedure, you'll come back on another day to have it done.
The actual root canal itself only takes a single visit to be completed. Unless you have multiple teeth that need root canals, you won't be spending much time in the dentist's chair. From there, your last appointment will only be to check up on you and make sure that everything is healing properly. In other words, you're spending about as much time in the root canal process from start to finish as you would if you had a simple cavity filled.
For more information, reach out to a company such as Cottonwood Dental.