Root Canal Treatments: Separating Fact From Fiction

If the words “root canal treatment” cause you fear and panic, there’s a strong chance you’ve heard some of the commonly shared misconceptions about the procedure. Often, information becomes exaggerated, contributing to increased anxiety around dental care.

If you’re experiencing a toothache, it’s essential you receive treatment. The pain could worsen without proper care, and you may lose teeth. 

So, is a root canal treatment as bad as people suggest? What happens during the root canal procedure? And does a root canal hurt?

In this guide, we’ll tear apart the false fiction associated with root canal treatments and share the facts you need to know. Here’s why the procedure isn’t as bad as you may think!

Does a Root Canal Treatment Remove the Root?

No. Root canal treatments remove infection from the core of your teeth. Your tooth will remain intact. 

Inside each tooth is an area called a “pulp chamber”. This is where all the living tissue and nerve endings are. The living “dental pulp” stretches down into the root canals. Some teeth have up to four canals extending into the jaw. 

Are Root Canals As Painful As People Say?

Tell some people you’re due to have a root canal treatment, and they’ll wince. You may even hear a few horror stories about experiences their friends and family members had and how painful it was. 

Often, these second-hand stories mix up the facts. Dental infections are very painful. As bacteria infect the dental pulp, the tissue becomes inflamed. This causes pressure buildup against the nerve endings, causing severe throbbing pain. Often, this pain is unbearable, and you will struggle to eat and sleep. 

But that’s the only actual pain in the story. Before performing a root canal treatment, we’ll give you an anaesthetic. The procedure itself is straightforward and painless. When the anaesthetic wears off, you’ll notice your toothache has gone. 

The only pain associated with root canal treatments comes from leaving your infection untreated! 

Do Root Canal Treatments Take a Long Time?

If you’ve been told you’ll be in the chair for your root canal treatment for hours, don’t worry —this is another exaggeration. 

We’ll remove any infected matter from inside your tooth during your procedure. This clears the infection. 

The exact treatment length can vary depending on the complexity and the tooth being treated. Simple treatments and those on teeth with fewer roots take 30-60 minutes, while more complex cases and molars may take 90 minutes. 

In some cases, we may perform the procedure over two appointments or suggest adding a dental crown to the tooth later. 

Is It Easier to Have the Tooth Extracted?

Well, yes and no. Dental extractions are usually an easier procedure. But we wouldn’t recommend pulling a tooth over treating it. Root canal treatments are designed to save infected teeth. 

If you remove a tooth, you may face the following problems: 

  • Increased risk of gum disease and tooth decay
  • Neighbouring teeth can become misaligned 
  • Jaw bone deterioration 

If we can save your tooth with a root canal treatment, it’s the route we’ll take. 

If the Toothache Goes Away, Do I Still Need a Root Canal?

When a toothache strikes, you may be inclined to wait it out, hoping it goes away on its own. Unfortunately, dental infections don’t work like that. 

While the toothache from an infection may appear to go away, it doesn’t mean your tooth is better. Your toothache will return, and it’ll probably come with extra symptoms. 

Some of the other symptoms of a dental infection include: 

  • Pus around the bottom of the tooth
  • Black or greyness developing on the tooth
  • A bad taste in your mouth
  • Bad breath
  • Swelling in the gums and cheeks

No type of toothache should be ignored. Even mild toothache is a sign of a growing problem. The earlier we can treat you, the more likely it’ll be that we can save your tooth. 

Will a Root Canal Treatment Cause Further Complications?

Some people think that root canal treatments will make them ill. In a small number of cases, the infection in your tooth doesn’t go away completely. If you’re experiencing any discomfort or swelling after a couple of days, we may prescribe antibiotics to clear the last of your infection. 

Root canal treatments are precision procedures performed by experienced dentists. We use the latest techniques and technology to improve clinical outcomes and patient comfort. This treatment enjoys a very high success rate. Teeth saved by this procedure can last a lifetime. 

Root Canal Treatment in Ipswich

Contrary to what you may have heard, root canal treatments are routine and painless procedures designed to relieve the unbearable toothache associated with infection. Modern dentistry has dramatically improved patient experiences, and we’ll do everything possible to ensure your root canal is stress-free. 

Call us today to book your appointment.

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