7 Myths & Facts of a Root Canal Procedure Which May Keep You in Pain


man having a root canal

There are many misconceptions in people’s mind regarding a root canal procedure. They imagine loud drills and intense pain. But with modern dental technologies and inventions, this has changed considerably.


We will discuss the 7 myths of a root canal procedure.

  • Myth 1- A Root Canal Procedure is painful.

Fact – When people need a root canal procedure, is a root canal painful is the most common apprehension that comes to mind. However, the source of pain they feel is actually the on-going infection in the tooth, not getting a root canal. RCT carried out during this pain causes a psychological impact on the patient.

This makes them think that the pain is due to the dental treatment rather than the disease. This procedure is done under local anesthesia, which eliminates the pain.  With the latest technological advancements and anesthetics, root canal treatment today is not painful.

  • Myth 2- A good alternative to root canal treatment is extraction (pulling the tooth).

woman having dental visit

Fact – Success rate of a properly performed root canal procedure is between 85% to 97%. Retaining the original natural tooth if possible, is the very best option.

Although modern dental techniques have enabled us to replace the natural tooth with a bridge or an implant, but it needs more time in treatment and incur more financial loss to patients. It also results in further procedures to neighboring teeth and supporting tissue and therefore, nothing can be as good as the original tooth itself.

  • Myth 3: You only need a root canal treatment if you are experiencing tooth ache.

Fact – Sometimes teeth that are infected are not painful and have turned into chronic cases. They may need root canal therapy in order to avoid the spread of infection in the bone. With the help of several tests, including temperature testing and percussion testing, we can determine whether a tooth has become non vital/dead and needs to receive a root canal treatment.

  • Myth 4- A Root Canal Procedure requires several visits to the dentist.

what is a root canal

Fact – Earlier, root canal treatment required several visits to the dentist. However, in recent years, dental advancements have shortened this time frame drastically. Dentists are now able to complete the procedure in a couple of hours.

It also depends on the condition of patient’s tooth, its ongoing infection or any canal curvature/complication present if any. In case the root is severely infected, the dentist will usually insert an anti microbial material in the canal to promote healing.

If there is no serious infection, the root canal can be completed within a single appointment. Your dentist can give you a good idea of what is required, especially after thoroughly examining your oral health.

  • Myth 5- The benefits of root canal procedure are temporary.

Fact – Results of a properly done root canal are long lasting. A well executed root canal procedure relieves patient’s pain and retains the tooth for the life time. However, post root canal restoration or crown (if advised) by the dentist, is the key to the long term successful result. A good final crown combined with proper at home oral care of the tooth and routine dental visits ensures the life long retention of your tooth.


  • Myth 6: Root canal procedure causes illness.

Fact – You may find various information on the internet portals or elsewhere, stating that if you receive a root canal treatment you’re more likely to become ill or contract a disease in the future which is simply not true. No piece of scientific research has ever found a link between root canals and physical disease or sickness.

Root canal filling materials are highly biocomaptible, and have several years of scientifically proven evidences. If you feel anxious about getting a root canal treatment, talk to your dentist about your apprehensions. It is their responsibility to dispel and unravel some of these harmful misconceptions and explain the entire procedure.


  • Myth 7: Pain after root canal will vanish immediately.

Fact – During the procedure, the dentist removes the infection from inside the tooth.  The patient will immediately feel significant improvement. However, it is common to have some sensitivity in the initial few days after root canal therapy and patient might feel mild pain on chewing. The use of analgesics will help in these initial days. Post operative discomfort after root canal treatment also depends on the complexity of the case and presence or absence of infection in the bone before treatment. However, pain or discomfort should completely disappear after initial healing period.

We should always respect what nature has given to us.   The root canal procedure is one of the treatments available to saves your natural tooth. Root canal treatment is helping patients all over the world in carrying out their day to day activity efficiently and maintain their natural smiles for many years.

One biggest myth is that the root canal treatment cost is high and hence people are afraid of visiting a dentist. However, root canal treatment is not expensive but ignorance is.


  1. Afton Jackson 01/06/2020
  2. Lorenzo Gutierrez 12/26/2019
  3. Alicia Owens 12/15/2019
  4. Audrey Perry 11/14/2019
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