Root canals are common procedures and one of the main ways we know what type of treatment is necessary is by the level of pain you are experiencing. Many patients who need a root canal procedure experience severe or constant pain. Your pain may worsen when you lie down. We will take an x-ray to confirm that you need a root canal.
Some patients never feel pain and root canals are diagnosed only because they can be seen on x-rays. These patients are the lucky ones because they managed to avoid pain.
Just because your root canal does not hurt right at the moment does not mean you can put it off indefinitely. First of all, a root canal is an infection and infections can flare up or worsen at any time. The longer you go before having your necessary procedure, the more risk you are taking for being caught off guard by severe pain.
Root canal procedures are sometimes difficult to diagnose if no infection is visible on your x-ray, but fortunately they are not difficult to treat and may often be a last effort to save a troubled tooth. The cost, risk, and inconvenience are far lower for a root canal than for tooth replacement therapy.