5 Root Canal Myths Exposed

Having been a Lancaster CA dentist for many years, I can tell you that there a few dental treatments patients have trouble getting comfortable with. Root canals are one of those treatments.

Root canals are seen as the boogieman of dental treatments. We even use root canal as a metric to compare things we absolutely do not want to do. It’s hard to say where these misconceptions began, but the reality is much different. Today I want to expose five root canal myths.

Five Root Canals Myths Exposed


  • Root Canals Cause Disease. Several years, in fact more than 100, a dentist by the name of Dr. Weston Price theorized that root canals can cause illnesses. Among the problems, Dr. Price asserted that root canals increased a person’s risk of cancer. We dentists talk a lot about the connection between oral health and overall health, but there is no evidence that shows root canals are dangerous. In fact, root canals can restore the health of your mouth. Leaving an infected or abscessed tooth in the mouth can cause the serious medical problems. It’s even possible for the abscess to enter the brain.  


  • Root Canals are Temporary. Not every dental treatment will last forever. Most treatments have a lifespan. Root canals are not one of those treatments. Root canal therapy is successful about 95 percent of the time. Research has found that people who have root canals keep that tooth for their entire lives.


  • Tooth Extractions are Better. Extracting a tooth is not better or an alternative to root canals. You might need a root canal because of an infection, abscess, or even dental trauma. Extracting a tooth every time you need a root canal would leave gaps in your smile. A missing tooth may not seem like a major problem, but it can disrupt your smile and lead to other physical changes. Missing teeth can cause your remaining healthy teeth to shift, and missing multiple teeth can make it difficult to eat.  Plus, a root canal saves the tooth and makes it functional for years!


  • Root Canals Hurt. This is a myth that was true several decades ago, but modern treatments make root canal therapy minimally invasive. It’s actually no more involved than getting a filing. We now use materials that are more malleable and comfortable than ever. If you are nervous about the treatment, we can provide sedation options. We can help you take the edge off with nitrous oxide, better known as laughing gas. If you need deeper forms of sedation, we can bring in a specialist to offer IV sedation.


  • You Don’t Need a Root Canal Unless You’re in Pain. In some cases, a tooth in need of a root canal will cause you extreme pain. But that doesn’t mean that your tooth must hurt to need a root canal. The best way to determine the health of a tooth is with a comprehensive exams and digital X-ray.  

Save Your Natural Teeth with Root Canal Treatment

Call Tab A. Boyle, DDS at 661-524-8457 today to schedule your root canal consultation. You can use our online form to schedule your appointment as well. Root canals are an effective treatment that not only saves your tooth from extraction, but protects the rest of your smile from disease as well.

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