Do I Need a Root Canal or a Tooth Extraction?

For many people, it’s bound to happen. Over time, our teeth get flaws, they become infected, or they break down and fracture. When this happens, dentists are here to preserve your beautiful smile and give you the confidence you want.

In the case of a serious infection or accident happening to a tooth, a dentist will determine the best treatment option, often choosing between a root canal or a tooth extraction. Good dentists practice conservative dentistry and try to save as many teeth as possible throughout your life. Therefore, when possible, many dentists may encourage patients to choose a root canal over an extraction, when all else is equal.

Root Canal

Contained within each tooth is a small space called the root canal. This canal holds blood vessels and nerves in what is known as dental pulp. It is possible for the pulp to become diseased or even die, causing a toothache or, more seriously, an abscess. In the past, the conventional way to treat this was to simply remove the entire tooth. But times are much different now. We can perform a root canal procedure to restore your tooth back to health. A dead tooth can be saved and can last a lifetime, with its roots receiving nourishment from the surrounding teeth. When we perform a root canal, we fill the canal with a product called ‘gutta percha’ and place a dental crown over the tooth.

Tooth Extraction

Unfortunately, sometimes a tooth is so decayed or fractured that it cannot be saved. In this case, we utilize state-of-the-art equipment known as an i-CAT to scan and evaluate the position of a tooth and detect present or future problems. Our computer-guided, three-dimensional x-ray is invaluable in determining other things your doctor needs to know, such as the position of the teeth relative to vital structures like the sinuses and nerves. This process helps us ensure that the extraction goes well and that we have the overall health of your entire mouth in mind.

If you have any questions about root canals or extractions, or if you would like to schedule a free consultation, please contact our team or make an appointment. Our incredible staff will give you the best dental care possible.

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