Dental fear is common, and some procedures spark more fear than others. Root canals are one procedure that induces anxiety for many patients. Whether it's the procedure itself or just fear of the dentist, you can take some steps to help calm your nerves and get through it without going into a panic
Practice Natural Anxiety-Reducing Methods
Meditation and visualization are two effective techniques for reducing anxious feeling before and during a root canal. Quiet meditation daily can help reduce overall anxiety, but you can also practice before the procedure. Just sit in a quiet place and spend a few minutes focusing on breathing and positive affirmations. Visualization is another good way to help ease anxiety during the procedure. Using this method, you can take yourself to a happy, serene place during the root canal. You can also visualize a positive scenario about your visit and plant that image in your mind to help ease anxious thoughts.
Get the Facts
Many times, we are scared of the unknown, so maybe asking questions and finding answers can calm your fears. Your dentist can help you with this if you share your concerns. Also, do a little research. While root canals are thought to be the most painful dental procedure, most patients have positive things to say afterward. It isn't as painful as you might be anticipating. Dentists have so many various ways to help the patient stay calm and comfortable, so ask about those methods as well. You and your dentist can decide on the right solution for you.
Ask About Alternatives
The main alternative to a root canal is pulling the bad tooth. Extraction is quicker than a root canal, but you'll be missing a tooth. This can be more traumatic than the root canal procedure. After the tooth is extracted, you'll need a dental implant or bridge to fill the space left behind. If you leave the space, it can lead to problems with drifting teeth later on. Your dentist's job is to save your natural teeth when possible. When a tooth is decaying and broken it is very painful. In fact, the toothache from a bad tooth is actually more painful than the actual root canal. An infected tooth is a danger to your health.
It's the root canal therapy that relieves the pain and restores the tooth, so you can continue to eat, smile and talk without pain and worry.