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Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Root Canals: Fact vs Myth

There are several root canal myths to be dispelled in society as follows;

• A root canal is painful. This common myth has its roots from ancient days where the procedure was done using non-advanced methods unlike today. This has been highlighted by the American Association of Endodontists. The administration of general anesthesia will numb the area and the procedure will be painless.

• Another common myth is that all root canals must be done in several appointments. This is not the case because the procedure can be completed in one or two appointments. However, there are several factors that will dictate the number of appointments including;

a) Need for referral
b) Tough root canal
c) Extent of infection

Let your dentist recommend the number of appointments after having considered your case.

• Another common myth is that a root canal treatment can cause illness such as arthritis, heart and kidney disease. Research has shown this NOT to be the case. This myth has sprouted from research done almost 100 years ago by Dr. Weston Price. In his research of 1910 to 1930, Dr. Price claimed that illness can emanate from the procedure due to infections. His claims have been refuted by modern research because there is no medical evidence to prove the same.

• Another common myth is that a tooth has to hurt to qualify for root canal. Dentists can discover teeth that are dead and recommend the treatment however painless. Therefore, screening to check the status of the tooth by the doctor is advised. Tests that are employed to check dead teeth include;