If the soft pulp inside your tooth becomes infected, you only have two options: root canal treatment or extraction. Leaving it untreated is NOT an option. It can be quite painful! Plus, left untreated, the infection can spread to other parts of your body. So which procedure should you choose?

Every case is unique, of course. In general, though, it’s best to keep your dental structure in place. It affects four important factors: cost, recovery time, comfort, and oral health. 

You can trust the experts at Northwest Endodontic Specialists to consider your situation carefully. Call 360-525-2882 today to schedule a consultation with us in Olympia, WA.

In the meantime, see why a root canal is often the best choice:

  • Lifetime Cost Is Similar – Yes, a root canal procedure costs more than a tooth extraction. But you need to consider the lifetime cost, not just the upfront expense. When a tooth is removed, so are the roots. Tooth roots help keep your jawbone strong and intact. Without them, you lose bone mass – about 25 percent in the first year alone. To avoid this bone loss, you’ll need to get a dental implant/dental crown combination. If you don’t want an implant, we still recommend replacing a lost tooth to avoid problems with speaking and eating. You can replace a missing tooth with a dental bridge. When you add the cost of tooth replacement, the “savings” of an extraction will vanish.
  • Recovery Is Less of a Hassle – It typically takes a few weeks for your soft tissue to fully heal after an extraction. During that time, you will need to treat the extraction site with care. Unlike an extraction, there is no bleeding to worry about following a root canal. You will experience few, if any, limits on your normal activities like eating, oral hygiene, and exercise. You also won’t have to worry about complications that sometimes follow tooth removal, like a dry socket.
  • You’ll Be More Comfortable While You Recover – After a root canal, you can expect only minimal discomfort that is easy to control with over-the-counter medication. Many of our patients report no discomfort at all. There is typically more discomfort after having a tooth removed. 
  • Your Smile Will Stay the Same – In general, it’s always best to keep your natural tooth. With a root canal, you’ll retain your dental structure, including your tooth roots. As noted above, you lose about 25 percent of your bone mass near a removed tooth in the first year. The loss continues, sometimes causing a noticeable difference in how your face looks. This will happen unless you get a dental implant following your extraction. If you don’t replace your tooth – with or without an implant – your nearby teeth will move and shift. This can create a misaligned bite. Depending on where the tooth is located in your mouth, you’ll also show a visible gap in your smile. Plus, the missing tooth may affect your ability to chew food and even speak clearly. You’ll avoid all of that with a root canal.

Think you may need root canal treatment? Call Northwest Endodontic Specialists at 360-525-2882 for an appointment in Olympia, WA. You can also ​​schedule online.