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There are a few things that people dread more than root canal treatment. Media of all types refer to it as the standard by which all other bad things are compared. As in, I’d rather have a root canal than (fill in the blank).
While no one is going to go out of their way to actually WANT a root canal treatment performed, there is little reason to fear the treatment itself. In fact, I would much rather experience a root canal treatment than having a tooth removed (which is often the only alternative). Let me sum it up this way, it’s boring!
Okay, how about tedious, monotonous or sleep inducing. In fact there is no treatment we perform in our office that people routinely fall asleep during other than root canal treatment. So why the bad reputation for this treatment if it really isn’t so terrible?
My belief is that it stems from the individual dentist’s approach to the treatment. There are some in our profession who jump on the chance to start and thereby bill for a treatment at the very first opportunity they can. A patient in the hand, so to speak. Since patients tend not to go to the dentist and often wait until they are in pain, the dentist is afraid that if they don’t treat the patients while they have them there, they will likely lose the patient.
What do you think happens when a tooth isn’t numb and the dentist starts poking into the nerve? You got it, PAIN!
We studiously avoid this situation by putting our patients on antibiotics BEFORE root canal treatment in the vast majority of cases. Then the tooth is easily made completely numb and the treatment is pain free. This is a small thing perhaps, but critically important to the most important person in our office, you, our patient.
Root canal therapy is a very common procedure. It has a reputation of being undesirable and painful but when done properly it is actually painless. Every tooth in your mouth is composed of a crown and a root. When a cavity or bacteria penetrates the tooth the root and its nerves become irritated.
As a result the bacteria within the pulp cavity, needs to be removed and cleaned in order to restore the tooth to its healthy state. Following the procedure the tooth is fragile and is consequently restored to a natural crown for a lifetime of durability. Root canals have a success rate of 95 percent or greater. Most root canals are diagnosed by patient’s sensitivities to a specific tooth. Be sure to consult your dentist if any symptoms or discomfort.
Dr. Dean Dietrich founded Pleasant Dental® with the vision of serving his community by providing high-value comfortable care. Dr. D. has over 30 years of expertise and continues to be very passionate about his work. He and team enjoy caring for fearful patients and providing care in a unique upbeat, even fun way.