Common Misconceptions About Root Canal Treatments

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Root canal treatments are often misunderstood and surrounded by myths that can cause unnecessary fear and anxiety. These misconceptions can prevent individuals from seeking the treatment they need to alleviate pain and save their teeth. In this article, we will debunk some of the most common misconceptions about root canal treatments and provide the facts to help you make an informed decision about your dental health.

Misconception 1: Root Canal Treatments Are Extremely Painful

Why This Misconception Exists: The belief that root this treatments are extremely painful is a long-standing myth rooted in outdated practices and media portrayals.

The Reality: Modern  treatments are relatively painless, thanks to advances in dental technology and anesthesia. Most patients report that the procedure feels similar to getting a routine filling. The pain associated with root canals is usually from the infection in the tooth, not the treatment itself. The procedure actually relieves this pain by removing the infected tissue.

Misconception 2: Root Canal Treatments Cause Illness

Why This Misconception Exists: Some misconceptions are based on debunked theories from the early 20th century, suggesting that root canals could lead to systemic illnesses.

The Reality: There is no scientific evidence to support the claim that root canal treatments cause systemic illnesses. Modern research and clinical studies have shown that root canal treatments are safe and effective. The goal of a root canal is to remove infection from the tooth and prevent it from spreading, thereby improving overall health.

root canal

Misconception 3: It’s Better to Extract the Tooth

Why This Misconception Exists: Some people believe that extracting a tooth is a simpler and more effective solution than undergoing a complete treatment.

The Reality: While tooth extraction might seem like a quick fix, it can lead to further dental problems down the line. Extracting a tooth leaves a gap that can cause neighboring teeth to shift, leading to bite problems and potential jaw issues. Root canal treatment saves the natural tooth, preserving the function and appearance of your smile. With proper care, a tooth that has undergone a root treatment can last a lifetime.

Misconception 4: Root Canal Treatments Take Multiple Visits

Why This Misconception Exists: Historically, root canal treatments often required multiple visits to the dentist.

The Reality: Thanks to advancements in dental technology and techniques, many root canal treatments can now be completed in just one or two visits. Your dentist will assess the complexity of your case and determine the appropriate number of visits, but the process is generally much quicker and more efficient than it used to be.

Misconception 5: Root Canals Are Only Necessary If You Have Severe Pain

Why This Misconception Exists: People often associate the need for a root canal with severe, unrelenting tooth pain.

The Reality: While severe pain can be a sign that a root canal is needed, it’s not the only indicator. Sometimes, a tooth can be infected or damaged without causing significant pain. Other signs that you might need a root canal include prolonged sensitivity to hot or cold, discoloration of the tooth, swelling or tenderness in the gums, or a persistent pimple on the gums. Regular dental check-ups are essential for detecting these issues early.

Misconception 6: A Root Canal Kills the Tooth

Why This Misconception Exists: The term “root canal” can be misleading, leading people to believe that the procedure kills the tooth.

The Reality: A root canal treatment removes the infected or damaged pulp from inside the tooth, but it doesn’t “kill” the tooth. The tooth is cleaned, disinfected, and sealed to prevent further infection. The tooth remains functional and can last a lifetime with proper care. The nerves inside the tooth are removed during the procedure, but the tooth itself remains alive and well-integrated into your mouth.


Understanding the realities of root canal treatments can help alleviate fears and misconceptions, ensuring you make informed decisions about your dental health. Modern root canal treatments are safe, effective, and relatively painless, offering a way to save your natural teeth and maintain a healthy smile. If you suspect you might need a root canal or have questions about the procedure, schedule a consultation with UltraSmile Miami. Our experienced dental professionals are here to provide you with the care and information you need to keep your smile bright and healthy.



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