It is not surprising to think about how much advancement has occurred in the field of endodontics (root canal treatments) over the past couple of decades. Along with the evolution of methods and techniques used in endodontic treatment (root canal treatments), the perception of endodontic treatment has also evolved among patients and dental professionals. Are root canal treatment still perceived to be a painful treatment procedure?
But, there is still some ongoing debate about the predictability of the endodontic treatment. A study involving more than 1 million people who had received root canal treatment concluded that about 97% of the people who received root canal treatment still had functioning teeth eight years later. This proves the efficacy and predictability of a root canal treatment.
How root canal procedures have evolved from the past
The endodontic procedures (root canal treatment) in general are designed to alleviate pain and to prevent the further progression of either gum diseases or bad decay. The success rate and predictability of root canal procedures depend upon the dentists and the instruments and the equipment used for the treatment. Just like the other fields of dentistry, the last two decades have witnessed immense advancement in the tools and techniques used in endodontic treatment. New 3D scanning technology allows dentists to evaluate the root canal anatomy and its associated structures in three dimensions. This allows the dentists to better understand the underlying problem, extra canals, different anatomy of the root canal, etc. This helps them to accurately determine the best treatment plan suited for the patient.
Painful root canal treatment is a thing of the past
One of the most tenacious misbelieves about root canal procedures is that it is extremely painful. But in reality, root canal treatments haven’t been painful in decades. In fact root canals, effectively remove the source of pain.
Today, however, root canal treatments are virtually pain-free. This is due to the use of modern endodontic techniques, equipment and the expert application of anesthesia which allows the patient to get a pain-free treatment. Just like any other surgical procedure, there will be minor discomfort after the treatment procedure. This can be effectively controlled by using pain medications or pain killers. The discomfort after the root canal treatment will usually subside within a week or less. So the perception that root canal treatments are painful is no more valid. Simply get your root canal treatment done if your dentist insists to salvage your natural teeth.