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President's 'As Popular as a Root Canal' Comment Misses Mark
Date:1/28/2010

CHICAGO, Jan. 28 /PRNewswire/ -- In his first State of the Union address, President Obama outlined many challenges facing our nation, but fear of root canals should not be one of them. Obama unintentionally reinforced a myth and outdated misconception about the "unpopular" nature of root canal procedures. The AAE, which represents root canal specialists, knows that root canal procedures should not be feared, and hopes the President and all Americans become better informed for the sake of their dental and total body health.

The truth is that most root canal treatments can be completed in one visit and are entirely comfortable. A national consumer survey published in 2009 shows that an overwhelming majority of root canal patients use positive words to describe the experience. According to a previous poll, those who had a root canal performed by an endodontist, a dentist who specializes in root canal procedures, are six times more likely to describe it as "painless" than those who have never had the procedure.

"While we certainly understand the President's intent, people need to know that root canals don't cause pain, they relieve it," said Dr. Gerald N. Glickman, AAE president. "Root canals may sound daunting, but endodontists can do this procedure quickly, efficiently and with virtually no pain involved. The result is a restored natural tooth that can last a lifetime."

Research shows saving natural teeth has extensive health benefits. The endodontist saves the tooth by removing its infected inner tissue, and cleaning, filling and sealing the root canal space. After placement of a crown or other restoration, the tooth is protected and continues to function like any other tooth. Root canal treatment saves more than 17 million natural teeth each year.

Poor dental care can lead to serious health pr
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SOURCE AAE
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