A Root Canal Restores the Health of Your Tooth and It Isn’t as Painful as You Fear

If your dentist says you need a root canal on a tooth that's been bothering you, you may fear it will be a painful procedure. Your concern about pain may even be so strong that you put off having the work done or stress over the upcoming dental appointment. Your concerns are most likely based on rumors you've heard and not on facts. Here's a look at having a root canal done and the amount of pain you can expect.

Pain during the Procedure

Your tooth will be numbed before the procedure begins, so you should not feel any pain during your root canal. If you have dental anxiety that causes you to anticipate pain and be fearful, talk to your dentist about options that might help. if you fear pain from the needle, your dentist might use nitrous oxide to help you relax before the anesthetic injection. Nitrous oxide is a gas you breathe through your nose that relaxes you and relieves anxiety. This might reduce your anxiety that makes you feel pain even when it's not actually present.

Another concern you may have is your toothache. If you're having a root canal done, the tooth may be aching all the time or the pain may be triggered at times unexpectedly. The good thing about the anesthetic you receive for your root canal is that it deadens the toothache. This can further help you relax and be more comfortable during the procedure.

Pain after the Anesthetic Wears Off

It will take a few hours for the anesthetic to wear off and for feeling to return to the area around your tooth. Some people don't experience much pain or discomfort during this stage since the problem causing the toothache has been corrected. It's possible that you'll have some pain, but it shouldn't last more than several hours to a few days. Any pain you do have should be mild enough to control with over-the-counter pain relievers. You might have tenderness for a longer period of time if your tooth was infected since it will take your body a while to fully heal from the abscess.

Your dentist will provide instructions for your recovery period that prevents pain and speeds healing. For instance, you should avoid crunchy foods until your tooth has recovered. Any severe pain or swelling that gets worse is unusual and a sign you should call your dentist right away for an evaluation.

Dental practices have advanced over the years and now root canals can be done in a less painful manner compared to what your parents' generation may tell you about their experiences. A root canal is nothing to fear and it puts an end to your toothache, so it is worth it to ease your pain and restore the health of your tooth.