It probably isn’t anyone’s favorite dental treatment, but when your dentist recommends root canal therapy, it’s a good idea to take heed. The restorative technique is designed to remove invasive bacteria and infection from inside of your tooth, and may be the only way to find relief from the pain of tooth infection. Before getting root canal therapy, however, there are a few questions you should always ask your dentist to determine if it really is your best option.
Could a dental filling effectively treat the tooth?
Tooth decay, or tooth infection, is the cause behind cavities, which can often be treated with tooth-colored fillings. If you seek treatment for your infected tooth in a timely manner, then a filing could prove a better option than root canal therapy. However, if decay reaches the tooth’s inner chamber, or pulp, then it can infect the tooth’s nerves and blood vessels, and root canal therapy will be the only way to remove it.
Would extracting the tooth be better?
On the other hand, you may wonder if extracting the tooth is better than putting it through root canal treatment. Yet, if your tooth can be saved, then that is typically the preferable option, since an extracted tooth will have to be replaced to preserve the rest of your oral health. Tooth extraction is only preferable if root canal therapy can’t save it, in which case removing the tooth would be the only way to stop the infection from spreading further.