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There are several important procedures we’re proud to carry out for our patients at the offices of John D. Stark, DDS, and one such procedure is the root canal. Used to repair and save decaying or infected teeth, the root canal involves removing nerve and pulp and sealing the inside of a tooth to prevent future risks it may incur.

Unfortunately, like many dental services that everyone has to go through but far fewer are actually trained in, many misconceptions have surfaced over the years about root canals. Some of these myths may have formed due to movies or TV, while others might just be simple mistakes that became lore and spread around. Regardless, we’re here to set the record straight – here are four popular root canal myths debunked.

Myth #1: Root Canals Are Terribly Painful

We can understand where this particular myth came from – root canals are often used to help manage extremely painful symptoms, present due to dead or decaying teeth that we’re performing the root canal on. And in truth, methods used for root canals many decades ago did indeed have some pain associated with them.

Today, however, root canal procedures themselves are not painful whatsoever. You may feel some minor sensations during the treatment, but we will take several steps in sedation and anesthetic areas to ensure this is as far as things go. You’ll be both safe and comfortable in our staff’s hands during a root canal, which will feel no more painful than a common filling.

Myth #2: It’s Better to Just Pull the Tooth

With this particular myth, we have no idea of the source – but we do know how damaging the information can be, as it’s completely false. There are extremely few situations where keeping your natural tooth as long as you can is not the optimal choice for your oral health, and many problems can crop up if you do remove a tooth in this case. While bridges or implants are options in some situations, they don’t have the same benefits of natural teeth.

Myth #3: Root Canals Cause Disease

This silly myth comes from a piece of “scientific research” done almost 100 years ago – we won’t even link to it or identify it further due to how misleading and ineffective it actually was. This study has been disproven many times over by modern trials, and root canals not only don’t cause disease, but can be effective at eliminating infections and similar issues in the mouth.

Myth #4: If I’m Not in Pain, I Don’t Need a Root Canal

As we noted above, root canals are often used to help address major pain symptoms due to various oral conditions. But it’s important to note that just because you aren’t in serious pain doesn’t necessarily mean a root canal isn’t right for an oral condition you may still be experiencing. Certain conditions in the mouth may not come with specific pain, only visual signs that can be seen by your dentist.

For more properly researched and sourced information on root canals, or to learn about any of our dental services, speak to the staff at the offices of John D. Stark, DDS today.