When your tooth has unbearable pain and serious condition of decay, your doctor might advise you for a dental implant or a root canal and choosing the best treatment can become confusing at times. Be it a dental implant or a root canal, both are frequently used for decayed tooth removal depending on the severity of the cavity.
Where the root canal helps restore the teeth, it removes only the infected pulp and caps it well. On the other hand, a dental implant procedure may involve the extraction of the tooth that is replaced by a prosthetic equivalent to your regular tooth. Both the procedures have their own set of protocols and treatment benefits.
This article will provide you with the dental implant procedure and root canal treatment and which one to choose accordingly.
Table of Contents :-
Feel free to skip ahead if one topic catches your eye:
1. Dental Implant:-
Implants are successfully used in various fields of treatment and medicine, dentistry is no exception. The implants here are prosthetics that mimic your original teeth with a root that looks similar to a screw. A situation where the tooth cannot be restored or saved is when you need a dental implant. Your dentist will follow the following procedure for successful implantation:
- Firstly, the diseased tooth is extracted after which the gums may require a few months to heal.
- After a couple of weeks, a temporary prosthetic can be placed to fill in the gap for some time.
- Once your dentist ensures complete healing of gums which may take around 3-4 months depending on the healing time, the permanent implants that look like your tooth is placed surgically.
The dental implant procedure involves the placement of an external metal source that is quite firm and is held strongly.
2. Root Canal:-
When the canal of the root cavity is filled with bad infection, that is when you start experiencing pain which in turn will require a root canal treatment. The steps in root canal treatment involves :
- Your dentist will first numb the area of the infected tooth with a local/topical anesthetic.
- Next, the crown is drilled open to remove the infection from the diseased tooth.
- The infection is cleaned with a lot of patience and precision as carefully removing the infected pulp from the root canal is essential.
- This may take a few sessions/ sittings for the complete clearance of the infection. However, if sessions are gapped, a temporary filling will be done to let the cavity heal between sessions.
- Then, when the infection is completely cleared, the gap is filled with a permanent filler to protect the cavity from further infections.
- Finally, a permanent crown that matches with the drilled tooth is fixed to seal the opening.
It is a procedure that retains the original structure of your tooth while cleansing the infection within.
3. Dental Implant vs Root Canal:-
While you are still skeptical about which procedure to undergo, knowing the pros and cons of each procedure can help choose the better and convenient option.
- The best part of a root canal is that your jaw bone is intact, the structure around your tooth is unchanged and your treated tooth is saved. While in the Dental implant procedure the infected tooth is extracted, and the basal tooth structure is adjusted.
- Though the possibilities of infections are less in dental implants, sometimes inflammation or infection is possible for varied reasons. The chances of infection in a root canal is negligible.
- Root canal procedure takes only a few days that depends on the sessions, and the crown is placed immediately after the removal of the infection. Whereas in dental implants, the jaw bone needs a minimum of three months to settle before the implants are placed surgically.
- There could be chances of screw loosening with implants, that could be tightened by your dentists in an appointment. At times, there are chances of fracture of a root canal treated tooth since the tooth after treatment is not as strong as your natural tooth was.
- Dental implants cannot be considered by children as their jawbones are in the growth stage. While a root canal is suitable for all age groups.
Though both the procedures are relatively painless, prescribed painkillers are suggested in case of any pain post-treatment.
4. Which One is Right For You?
Both dental implants as well as root canal have high success rates and choosing the right one becomes challenging. The below points can be considered while opting :
- If you want to save your natural tooth and only tackle the infection, you can opt for a root canal treatment.
- It’s important to note that diabetic patients with uncontrolled diabetes or even people who cannot quit smoking, can consider root canal as dental implant complications are high in such cases.
- However, if the infection and the damage of the tooth are way too much, and chances of saving the tooth is less then considering a dental implant would be ideal.
The choice of procedure depends on various aspects of the severity of the infection and the condition of the tooth within. This can be assessed and guided well by your dentist.
This comprehensive guide on both the root canal and the dental implant procedure would help you take your final call. The decision of which procedure is better depends on the condition of the infection and requirement of the situation after an in-depth check of your oral status by your dentist. At Dr. Sahni’s Dental Clinic you will get the right solutions, precise information and complete guidance as to how to go about a tooth decay recovery process.