Tooth extractions and root canal treatment are treatment options available for a tooth that is badly damaged by tooth decay. Let’s go through each one of them. For root canal treatment all the decay of the tooth is removed,the tooth  cleaned, all the nerves and blood vessels of the tooth are removed from the canals of the roots, this area is thoroughly cleaned and shaped after which a special inert material is placed there to completely seal off the canals. This is done to prevent growth and development of any bacteria and microorganisms. After this process is complete a filling is placed on the tooth to restore its form and function.

For an extraction, the diseased tooth is removed completely leaving a gap in that region. Tooth extractions carry their benefits and risks, you can click this link to learn more about it

Previously for a tooth badly damaged by decay, extraction was the main treatment modality. However, the process of cutting and cleaning the decayed portions would leave a very thin tooth structure which would inadequately support a filling and eventually fracture. With the advancement of technology, such teeth have a crown placed on them. A crown is a  ‘cap’ made in the shape of the tooth. This increases the strength of the tooth significantly.  Hence currently a root canal treatment can be performed on a badly damaged tooth and this tooth can have a crown placed on it and it will serve you for a very long time. Your natural tooth is precious. They never grow back once they have been extracted and so we try as much as possible to preserve it.

So, when exactly do we recommend an extraction instead of a root canal treatment? When there is tooth pain due to tooth decay in a patient who cannot maintain good oral hygiene. This may include the special needs population who may not be able to cooperate well throughout the procedure.

Another instance is tooth decay in the wisdom teeth. Wisdom teeth are in a very difficult to reach position in the mouth and so performing a root canal treatment would be very difficult and so sometimes we advise to have such teeth extracted rather than doing a substandard root canal treatment.

In severe gum disease in a patient who is not willing to have full mouth cleaning treatment done, an extraction would be the recommended treatment because of the risk of contaminating the root canal system and having substandard treatment done.

In a root canal treatment that has failed i.e., even after repeated attempts at doing the root canal treatment and medicating it but it still presents with pain, we may opt to extracting the tooth.

All in all, we value your natural tooth and before we resort to have it extracted, we will try all possible options to save it before we choose to have it extracted. Visit us today to learn more about how we can save your tooth.


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