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Should You Get a Root Canal or Extraction?

Having a decayed tooth will lead you to make an important decision. Your dentist may ask if you want to get a root canal or extraction if the damage is too extensive for a filling. Here's how to decide what to do:

Consider the Cosmetic Aspect

The first thing you'll need to consider is how the situation affects you cosmetically. A root canal is a procedure dentists do to help their patients save their teeth. Your dental provider will replace the pulp with a synthetic material, but you'll get to keep the shell of your tooth. The provider will place a crown on top of your tooth to support it as well. Thus, getting a root canal will not affect your smile in the least.

An extraction will cause you to have an immediate gap or space between two of your teeth. Furthermore, your teeth may shift or point inward over time. This method is cost-effective, but it may not be a helpful choice if your main concern is cosmetics.

Think About the Costs

If you're cost-conscious about the procedure, you need to know that the cost of a root canal far exceeds even the most complex extractions. An extraction can range from $100 to over $300, depending on whether you have insurance or any other type of coverage. Root canals can be in the range of $2,000 or more with the crown and extra care. Thus, you'll need to think about where you stand financially to make the most effective decision.

Ask Your Dentist for His or Her Input

Ask your dentist how he or she feels about the process. A compassionate dental provider will give you quality professional input regarding your choices. He or she will advise you on the most helpful options for your wellness, budget, and cosmetic concerns. Ultimately, you're the customer in the situation. Therefore, you can choose not to follow the dentist's advice if you feel it's too costly or it doesn't meet your needs. You can also consult with a second or third provider who can help you decide.

Check Your Coverage

You'll need to check your insurance, discount plans, and personal finances to see which procedure will most benefit you. Most dental insurance plans cover extractions and root canals to some extent. Enhanced dental plans may cover things like crowns, bridges, partial dentures, etc. Those items will help you with your cosmetic pursuits if you decide you desire an extraction.

Be sure to check the percentage your insurance provider is willing to pay for your treatment. Coverage amounts can range from 20 percent all the way to 80 percent for each procedure. The general percentage is about 50 percent, however. Furthermore, you'll need to ensure that your procedure or product doesn't have any restrictions on it, such as age limitations or limits on the number of times you can have someone perform the procedure.

Take a few days to decide how you want to handle your tooth issue. A trusted dentist will help you make the most fruitful choice.

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