When we think of tooth saving tips, we immediately think of oral hygiene (brushing and flossing) or prevention like wearing your mouthguard during sports or other physical activity. But, rarely, do we think of the choice to be made once a tooth is compromised.
The American Association of Endodontists has an array of tooth saving tips once a tooth needs intervention: “Saving a natural tooth through endodontic treatment should always be the first choice for the best health and cosmetic results. There are many advantages to saving your natural tooth: efficient chewing; normal biting force so you can continue to eat your favorite foods; maintains a natural appearance; limits the need for more costly, ongoing dental work”.
Tooth Saving Tips
- If you are given a choice between root canal treatment or tooth extraction, always choose the root canal. Dentures, bridges or implants don’t look, feel, or function as well as natural teeth.
- If your dentist recommends tooth extraction, ask whether root canal treatment is an option.
- If your dentist says that an endodontic procedure is not an option, ask why, and request a referral to an endodontist. Endodontists specialize in saving teeth and have at least two years of advanced training in root canal procedures. They use advanced equipment to treat patients quickly and comfortably, diagnosing the condition, and relieving pain.
What to Avoid
- Never choose extraction because you think it will be cheaper or less painful! When a natural tooth is extracted, it must be replaced with an artificial tooth to prevent other teeth from shifting, and to prevent future dental problems. The cost of a denture, bridge or implant, plus the extraction, is higher than the cost of an endodontic procedure that would save the tooth for years to come. Modern techniques and anesthesia make root canal treatment virtually painless. Most dental plans cover endodontic treatment.
- Never choose extraction because you think it will be quicker! Endodontic treatments generally require 1-2 visits lasting less than an hour. An extraction requires one visit, but the denture, bridge or implant will require several additional visits.
Endodontists are our local superheroes that save teeth! Want to learn more about root canal treatment? Visit Phoenix Endodontic Group at www.phoenixendodontist.com.