Strong sentiments persist on root canal therapy

Dentist Woman Pain

Approximately 77% of Americans would rather sleep at the airport than have root canal treatment, according to a recent survey by Sonendo.

The company, developer of the GentleWave root canal disinfection system, gathered responses from consumers ages 35 and older, with 60% of respondents saying they had previously undergone a root canal procedure.

According to the findings, more than 67% of respondents either strongly agreed or agreed with the following statement: “I am terrified of getting a root canal procedure.”

If they were told by a dentist that they needed a root canal procedure, more than 80% of respondents indicated they would describe their feelings as anxious or scared. Moreover, 77% confirmed that they would rather be forced to sleep at the airport after a canceled flight than undergo a root canal procedure, according to the findings.

Additional key findings of the survey included the following:

  • Fifty-eight percent of respondents said the pain levels experienced during and after the root canal procedure are what scare them most.

  • When asked what level of pain a root canal procedure would be comparable to, respondents said breaking a bone (39%) and burning your hand on the stove (31%).

  • Fifty-four percent of respondents would rather have a colonoscopy than undergo a root canal procedure.

  • Nearly 80% of respondents said they would rather give up social media for two weeks than have a root canal procedure.

“It’s safe to say that many people still wince when they think of root canals,” said Sonendo Chief Commercial Officer Michael Smith in a news release.

Ultimately, being aware of consumers’ strong attitudes toward root canal treatment can help the endodontic community better understand the literal and perceived pain points of traditional therapy, he added.

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