When a tooth becomes infected, there are two major solutions or treatment options for it. The two treatment options for an infected tooth are root canal treatment and dental implant. Both the treatments are good options, and a patient can opt for either based upon the level of damage to the infected tooth.
A dental implant is a procedure used to replace a tooth that is removed because of infection, damage, or decay; whereas, a root canal involves removing the tissues, which are infected inside the tooth. These two methods have been useful and helpful, but how do you know which option is best for you. If you are not sure which treatment is best for you, your orthodontist is the one to guide you and help you choose correctly.
In this article, we will explore both the treatment options and everything that you need to know about them. This will help you to know which is better for you and thereby streamline your decision-making process.
Root Canal Treatment
A root canal is one of the most feared dental procedures among all. Interestingly, it is one of the most beneficial and effective methods of dealing with an infected and decayed tooth. A root canal involves the removal of the infected tissues inside the tooth. In one visit, this procedure can resolve the issue of tooth decay and infection. The dentist will remove the nerves and pulp carefully, and then clean and disinfect the root canals.
After the cleaning and disinfecting, the dentist will fill the canals with a restorative material known as gutta-percha. They will also seal the tooth with a composite resin filling. For optimal strength, most dentists usually add a dental crown.
Benefits of a root canal
Your original tooth will remain intact
One of the major benefits of a root canal over a dental implant is that your original tooth will remain intact. You will not lose the tooth affected, which means you can maintain your natural smile. You might need a crown to fix most of the decayed area. However, most of your original tooth will still be in place for a crown to be attached to.
It is not expensive
Another major benefit is that a root canal is less expensive than a dental implant. For a root canal, you can spend anywhere between $300 and $2,500. However, for a dental implant, your bill will range between $3000 and $5000. In addition to being cheaper, insurance also covers root canals and crowns, and it is very difficult to find insurance coverage for dental implants.
Almost pain-free process and shorter treatment time
Many people are scared of a root canal treatment because of the numerous things they have heard. Nevertheless, the root canal procedure is almost pain-free, and it has a very short recovery time. You will not feel much pain since your tooth is not being removed. The treatment period is also shorter than that of a dental implant. With just one or two visits, you can get this process done. You will only need to wait for a short period to get a permanent crown.
The cons of a root canal
Not all teeth condition allows for a root canal
The condition of the tooth can be so severe or too damaged for a root canal treatment. In this case, the tooth you want to save will not survive in the end, and your dentist may advise you to try an alternative solution.
It can result in tooth loss
The patient can also experience some complications after the procedure. For instance, if some of the infected pulp is left behind in the tooth, it can result in abscesses, which means you would not have any other option than to remove the tooth.
A dental implant is more of a long-term solution to a tooth that is removed due to infection or decay. It is also a great solution to extracted or tooth loss due to accidents. A dental implant is a small threaded post made of surgical-grade titanium. These implants are the most successful solutions to missing or extracted teeth. If you take care of it well, an implant can last for a lifetime.
For a dental implant to be placed in your jaw, the natural tooth needs to be extracted completely. Implant placements usually take about three to six months to complete. After the first process, it takes a couple of weeks for the bone to fuse to the implant. You can use the implant just like your natural teeth once the process is complete.
Benefits of a dental implant
You will get a highly functional tooth
One of the major benefits of a dental implant is that your tooth will function very well after the process. It will resemble your natural tooth and also feel the same. You can still eat, drink, talk, and smile as you used to. Most times, a dental implant will look and feel much better than your natural tooth.
They can last a lifetime
Dental implants are for those looking for a long-lasting solution, as they can last for a lifetime. They are more durable than root canals and crowns. Their failure rate is very low and can serve you for a very long time if you take proper care of them. Root canals require periodic checkups, but you do not have to worry about this if you are using implants.
With dental implants, you will not keep your natural tooth, but you can still maintain your smile and look. Your dentist will craft the tooth very well and ensures it blends with your other teeth.
The cons of an implant
It is expensive
Dental implants are expensive compared to root canals. It is also difficult to find insurance that will pay for your implants. However, they are only expensive in the short-term, not in the long run, as you would not need to spend more money to maintain them.
Longer recovery time
They have a more invasive and lengthy treatment process. The recovery period is also longer than that of a root canal.
To know which is more suitable for you, your dentist will have to examine and consider your dental health and needs. However, the option you choose will depend on your dental issues, budget, and preference.