It is a common perception that a root canal is one of the most uncomfortable dental procedures that a patient can go through. One of the most used phrases in the English language is some variation of “that sounds like about as much fun as a root canal”. But does a root canal always have to be a painful procedure?
The short answer is no. The idea that a root canal absolutely must be painful is one of the most passed around myths that is treated like gospel truth. In reality, a root canal is one of the best forms of pain relief available to someone who is experiencing oral discomfort.
The myth about how incredibly painful it is to get a root canal first started back in the era before we had access to the same level of medical technology and anesthetics. With an increased ability to make the procedure as painless as possible and provide the correct medication for those who experience complications, a root canal is now about as painful as receiving a filling.
Even recent studies back up this assertion, as the majority of patients who were subjected to a root canal have reported experiencing an unexpected lack of pain. The same polls also showed that the perception of root canals being painful is primarily rooted in those who have never undergone the procedure.
What the rumor mongers do not know is that a person who has never undergone a root canal procedure is a whopping six times more likely to claim it is painful than someone who has already dealt with the procedure and has a more informed point of view.
The vast majority of dental patients end up needing a root canal procedure because they visit the dentist or endodontist and complain about pain in their teeth. Toothaches that are caused by issues necessitating a root canal are typically brought on by nerves inside of the tooth that have been damaged.
When the patient undergoes a root canal, the tissues that are causing their pain and discomfort are removed, which gives them a chance to experience a pain free existence. Instead of giving patients additional pain, a root canal actually gives them much less pain than they were forced to deal with before.
This is why it is important to visit a dentist or another trained professional in the oral field, such as endodontists. Relying on the hearsay of people who for lack of a better phrase, do not know what they are talking out can lead a person to develop an unnatural fear of going to the dentist. As a result, they may allow serious problems to fester so that they can avoid pain. Root canals are not nearly as painful as their detractors will claim and dentists are committed to ensuring that the procedure goes as smoothly as possible.