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Do Root Canals Hurt?

tooth crossYou’ve likely heard the idiom, “I’d rather have a root canal!” before, often used by people to compare worst-case scenarios. It implies root canals are painful or traumatic scenarios. However, our highly skilled dental team in Docklands is here to reassure you that it’s an old wives’ tale, with little basis in fact.

If anything, the time leading up to your root canal is when you might experience the most pain – as the nerve reacts to its damage or infection – and not the actual treatment itself. Root canal procedures have evolved over the last several years and are less painful than most people think.

What Exactly Is a Root Canal?

You may be told a root canal is necessary because of an abscess or to restore structure to the tooth through an eventual crown. It may also be necessary because of tooth sensitivity or due to nerve damage.

At its basic level, root canal treatments help remove the damaged nerve from the tooth. The procedure begins with cleaning the affected area and then filling the canal to prevent any further bacterial infection that may occur. The main goal is to save your tooth while removing the damaged nerves and blood vessels inside the canal.

Will It Be Painful?

Before the procedure, you will receive a local anaesthetic, which will numb the tooth’s nerve and the area surrounding the tooth. You may feel pressure during the procedure, but pain will not be associated with the treatment itself, thanks to the anaesthetic.

Afterwards, you may have discomfort in the area of the treatment. You will be instructed to take over-the-counter or prescription pain medication to alleviate inflammation or discomfort. Be sure to follow the instructions from your dental team to keep much of the pain at bay.

We can also offer sedation dentistry for patients whose anxiety and distress over the procedure may be too much for them to overcome. Feel free to contact our team before your root canal to discuss your preferences and options.

Contact Us to Schedule

If you have been told it’s necessary to have a root canal, do not delay this treatment, as it could result in further costly or more painful complications. Our team dedicates itself to providing a caring and compassionate approach, and we have flexible appointment times to suit your schedule.

Contact us today to book an appointment.


Any invasive or surgical procedure may carry risks. Before moving forward, it is recommended that you seek a second opinion from an appropriately licensed medical professional.

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