Most of us are a little bit nervous about going to the dentist, but when we tell a patient that they require a root canal, that anxiety sometimes turns into full-fledged fear.
There are a lot of misconceptions about root canals, leading to many patients having a great amount of trepidation about this procedure. The fact is, a root canal is a routine procedure and can help save your tooth.
And the #1 Asked Question Is... It's normal to have questions for us about root canals, and we're here to answer them for you and help put you at ease before your procedure.
These are some of the more frequently asked questions that our patients ask us before a root canal:
What is a root canal? A root canal is a procedure where we numb up your tooth then scrape out the infected area (the nerve and pulp) and replace it with a rubbery material called "gutta-percha." We then cover it with a crown or a filling to help preserve your tooth.
How long does a root canal take? Most root canal procedures take less than an hour from start to finish. Occasionally some patients need multiple appointments to complete the procedure, but even then, it takes less than 80 minutes overall.
Will the root canal permanently damage my teeth? Some people have heard rumors that a root canal will lead to "dead" teeth, that it's unsafe to perform this procedure, that root canals are prone to failure, and they're going to lose the tooth anyway. The fact is, there is strong evidence that is strongly in favor of the patient and your tooth.
Will it hurt? That is the number one question we encounter about root canals! You may experience a slight bit of discomfort after the procedure, which can be relieved by NSAIDs (like ibuprofen). However, during the actual root canal, you won't notice any pain whatsoever.
Do You Require a Root Canal?
If you've been told that one or more of your teeth needs a root canal, it's absolutely normal to be a little bit anxious about it.
Our office will go out of our way to ensure your comfort during this extremely routine procedure. Please give our office a call today if you have any questions about root canals or to schedule a comprehensive dental exam!