July 9, 2020
As you drive to your routine visit, you recount all the times you were “too tired” or “too busy” to properly brush and floss your teeth. Now that you are in the treatment chair, you desperately pray that your dentist does not find a mouthful of cavities during their examination. After a few minutes of poking around your mouth, they sit back and speak the five words you fear the most, “You need a root canal.”
Does this situation sound familiar? Or worse, did it happen to you and now you are avoiding the dentist at all costs? Unfortunately, roughly 15% of Americans don’t get the dental treatment they need out of anxiety around the procedure. Culprit number one is the highly feared root canal. However, here are four reasons patients today shouldn’t be scared!
A Root Canal Is a Straightforward Procedure
Did you know that 15 million root canals are performed each year? In addition to being one of the most common procedures conducted by dentists across the U.S., it is also extremely effective and holds a whopping 97% success rate. However, many patients are unaware of how straightforward the process is. First, your dentist will remove the nerve and pulp that have been negatively impacted by the infection. Next, the canal will be cleaned and sealed to prevent further dental damage. From there, your dentist will monitor your healing process and your smile will be restored!
It’s Not the Painful Procedure You Think It Is
Are you ready for a shocking finding? The American Association of Endodontics found that patients who have had a root canal are six times less likely to describe it as “painless” compared to those who have never had one! Thanks to innovations in technology and techniques, patients today can comfortably get the treatment they need without having to worry about enduring painful hours in the chair.
It Will Save Your Tooth
From minor discomfort to chronic, stabbing pain, patients of all ages often try the “just wait and see” approach before seeking help from their dentist. However, this can lead to further damage, costly repairs, and even tooth loss in extreme cases! To save your tooth, make sure to move forward with a root canal when your dentist first recommends it.
Your Dentist Will Work With You
Whether you have a debilitating fear or some minor nerves surrounding the treatment, it is important to remember that your dentist will work with you. They are an ally in your oral and overall health, and they genuinely care above preserving your teeth and gums. Therefore, don’t hesitate to speak with them directly about the concerns you have and what they can do to ensure you have a stress-free experience.
If the thought of undergoing a root canal sends chills down your spine, it is important to remember the above facts about this routine procedure. That way, you can move forward confidently to get the treatment you need!
About the Author
Since earning his Doctor of Dental Surgery from the University of Maryland School of Dentistry, Dr. Neil W. Vanik has spent the last nearly four decades providing world-class care to his community in Annapolis. With extensive experience and a dedication to individualized attention, Dr. Vanik is passionate about helping his patients achieve healthy smiles through routine cleanings, dental implants, root canal therapy, and everything in between! If you would like to speak with him about treating the root of your tooth pain, visit his website or give him a call at 410-268-5046.
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