Root Canals – Not as bad as you think!
Most people cringe when their dentist says they need a root canal. The fear of root canals is deep seeded in many people and the mere thought of the procedure scares them. I suspect this comes from misunderstanding or fear of a root canal. A root canal is a procedure that dentists use to save a life-your tooth's life! Teeth are living parts of your body and can therefore die. The pulp is the part of your tooth that contains the blood vessels and nerves in each tooth. If the pulp dies, the pain can be excruciating and needs attention. The most common causes of pulp death are physical trauma to the tooth, a cracked tooth, or a deep cavity.
During a root canal, the dentist will remove the dead pulp from the innermost area of your tooth and seal the open area with a rubber-like material. The dentist does NOT remove the tooth's root. Once the inner area of your tooth is sealed, the dentist will fit a cap over your original tooth, giving it a second life. You retain your original tooth under the cap and you won't have any more pain.
Root canals scare much of the population because at a point in history, removing the pulp was extremely painful. With the modern day procedure, it is no more uncomfortable than a regular old filling.
Now if you still fear a root canal, the best way to prevent one is preventive care. Brushing and flossing your teeth can go a long way to prevent deep cavities. Make sure if you play contact sports to wear a mouth guard to prevent cracked teeth and physical trauma.
But, if something were to happen, fear not. It's not as bad as you think it is!