Root Canal Vs. Tooth Extraction
We have compiled this article on “Root Canal Vs. Tooth Extraction.” The reference links are at the bottom of the article.
Toothache is highly prevalent in the community that makes patients to seek for necessary pain-relieving treatments. Root canal therapy (RCT) and tooth extraction are amongst the most commonly administered treatments for pain relief. During the past two decades new advances such as introduction of biomaterials, application of dental operating microscope (DOM) during surgical and nonsurgical treatments and improvement of engine-driven instruments for root canal preparation have led to higher success rate in endodontic treatment.
The paradigm shift and increasing tendency of dentists to replace the tooth with implant rather than conventional RCT, has led to a controversy. The increasing number of dentists that think implant may offer better results than RCT has caused a great concern among specialists.
Up to now, not a single non-biased evidence-based study has been published indicating that extraction and placement of implant (EPI) is more preferential than RCT. Moreover, excessive commercial emphasis on EPI has resulted in an obsessive tendency in dentists to choose it, even for endodontically treatable teeth.
In addition, patients’ interest and their ability to afford more expressive treatments may affect their decision-making potential. In a study conducted in Canada, only 39% of patients who had extracted their posterior teeth due to periapical periodontitis, have sought for their replacement with implants. In a recent study in England, most of the patients did not tend to treat their necrotic molars due to high treatment charges and preferred single-tooth edentulism. Based on the above-mentioned studies, it can be concluded that the dentists’ tendency to choose EPI is not always in harmony with the patients’ interest. Therefore, inappropriate guidance from the dentist may result in a toothless patient. Hence, in patients who cannot afford implant, the dentist’s decision should be towards keeping the tooth as long as possible.
Incorrect treatment planning may result in implant failure, so the dentists should not always think of implant placement as the ideal treatment. Although implant is a highly successful treatment, failure is probable.
Myths About Root Canals
The thought of a root canal may make you fearful or uneasy if you aren’t familiar with the procedure. There are common misconceptions that endodontic treatments such as root canals, cause pain and/or illness and should be avoided at all costs. The exact opposite is true. The pain, inconvenience and cost of avoiding endodontic treatment in favor of tooth extraction or a wait-and-see approach can be easily avoided. The longer you postpone treatment the more you risk the chance to save your tooth. Take the time to read the information on our website to find out what endodontists do to save teeth with minimal time and discomfort. Then address any remaining concerns or questions with your dentist or endodontist.
Decades ago that may have been the case, but with modern technology and anesthetics you won’t experience any more pain than if you went to have a cavity filled. The pain from a severe toothache, often caused by damaged tissues in the tooth, can be easily remedied when an endodontist removes the damaged tissue through root canal treatment. In addition, endodontists are experts in pain management, and most cases can be treated quickly and comfortably.
Information you may find on the Internet or elsewhere, claiming that if you receive a root canal treatment you’re more likely to become ill or contract a disease in the future simply isn’t true. This false claim was based on long-debunked and poorly designed research conducted nearly a century ago, long before modern medicine understood the causes of many diseases. There is no valid, scientific evidence linking root canal treatment to disease elsewhere in the body.
Saving your natural teeth, if possible, is always the best option. Nothing artificial can replace the look or function of a natural tooth so it’s important to always consider root canal treatment as an option. Endodontic treatment has a high success rate and many root canal-treated teeth last a lifetime. Replacing an extracted tooth with a bridge or implant requires more time in treatment and may result in further procedures to neighboring teeth and supporting tissue.
Root Canals Vs. Dental Extractions
If you have a “bad tooth” that’s been giving you problems for an extended amount of time, you may be wondering if the easier thing to do would simply be to plan a dental extraction. After all, if you remove your tooth for good, you don’t have to bother with it anymore…or so you assume.
In reality, it might actually be better to have your tooth treated with a root canal. During endodontic therapy, the infected or dying nerve is removed from the inside of your tooth. This step eliminates the source of discomfort and delays further infection. But a lot of people think that root canals have to hurt and would rather get their tooth pulled.
When you have a tooth extracted — regardless of the reason — it creates extra space inside of your mouth that wasn’t supposed to be there. This open gap can alter the alignment of the teeth on either side, causing them to drift inwards. One by one, the teeth gradually start leaning until your entire arch is affected.
Not only are adjacent teeth impacted by tooth loss, opposing teeth are as well! When a tooth no longer has a biting partner, it will start to erupt further out of its natural socket, looking for something to bite against.
So not only does tooth loss affect the area’s immediate neighbors, it alters your entire smile.
That being said, there are instances where having a tooth removed is in your smile’s best interest. For instance, severe damage that can’t be repaired, aggressive periodontal disease, or a dental emergency. When that’s the case, you’ll want to find a solution for replacing your missing tooth as quickly as possible, such as a dental implant or bridge.
Endodontic therapy is designed to protect your tooth and help it function for several more years. Even though your tooth is no longer “alive” after a root canal, it’s still capable of working alongside of its partners when we reinforce it with a full-coverage crown.
Getting a root canal is easier than it’s ever been, thanks to modern techniques and advanced technology. For instance, specific equipment makes cleaning out the chambers gentler and more efficient, compared to older manual methods. And 3D imaging allows your dentist to evaluate different nerve chambers, as opposed to relying on two-dimensional X-rays.
With a little local anesthetic to numb your tooth, getting a root canal in a modern dental office shouldn’t feel much different than any other routine procedure.
Should your tooth be removed, or is it better to try to save it? Visit with a Kois Center dentist in your area for a holistic approach that puts your entire smile’s health at the forefront of every care plan. Working with a Kois dentist allows you to feel confident knowing that your future smile is in good hands. Find a partnering dental team in your area today for more information!
Thank you for reading this article, and check back frequently for other dental health articles. Should you have any questions, please contact Apple Tree Dental today!
Article compiled by Apple Tree Dental
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