With the advancement of dentistry and dental techniques and technologies, root canal procedures have changed considerably over the past few years. Many patients do not realize this and still cling to their preconceived notions regarding root canals. The negative connotations that this procedure carries are largely unfounded.
1. A root canal is painful.
A root canal is meant to relieve pain. Deep decay or trauma could cause a dental infection or inflammation of the pulp inside the sterile chamber of the tooth. An infection affecting the pulp may cause severe discomfort and pain, because it is through the pulp temperature and pain are perceived. However, with modern anesthesia and antibiotics, root canals are usually as comfortable as other standard dental procedures.
2. Root canals are expensive.
Cost will vary, depending on the complexity of the procedure and how many root canals are being performed. Still, having a root canal is less expensive than tooth extraction and dental implant. Our office works with all budgets, and we accept most major insurances, offer financing, and set payment plans.
3. Root canal treatment is a lengthy process.
If there are no complications, root canal treatment usually takes only one or two hours and can be performed in one appointment. The number of follow-up appointments is determined by the condition of the tooth and the number of canals inside your tooth.
4. Root canals are likely to fail.
The success rate of root canals remains high, at approximately 85%. Also, even a root canal done years ago can be retreated by re-cleaning the inside of the root.
5. Tooth extraction is a better option.
Not only is tooth extraction and replacement more expensive, but a bridge or implant will take significantly more time and require more appointments. Tooth extraction is known to cause a significantly higher incidence of bacteria entering the bloodstream, as well.
6. Root canals cause illness.
According to the American Association of Endodontics, there is no valid scientific evidence linking root canals and disease elsewhere in the body. Root canal treatment is designed to eliminate bacteria from the infected tooth and prevent re-infection.
About the Authors: To schedule an appointment with Drs. Thanasi Loukas or Maria Loukas, please call (847) 696-1919. Our office, Loukas General Dentistry, is located conveniently near the intersection of Cumberland and Higgins in Park Ridge, Illinois.