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Should I do the root canal or extract the molar?

D

DFC16

Junior member
Joined
Dec 1, 2015
Messages
7
I had an impacted wisdom tooth that i didn't deal with. It caused a cavity in the second molar. The doctor said it was pretty near the root/nerve but he thought since I had no severe pain after the wisdom tooth extraction- he could just fill the cavity on the second molar.

After the filling yesterday i started having excruciating jabs of pain off and on until today so I went back to the dentist. He said it sounds like I need a root canal. But the procedure is expensive and I am having trouble affording it.

So he said a cheaper fix is to just remove the tooth.

I am stuck but highly tempted to just remove the tooth. It's not only cheaper but it means there's just no way for this tooth to bug me again in future. i have heard about root canals failing or getting infected again after 4-5 years. Sounds like hassle if i can just get the bugger out.

What do you guys think? I know the decision is ultimately mine but would like some thoughts. :)
 
FearfulInMA

FearfulInMA

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Jun 14, 2012
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Massachusetts, USA
I'd always try to save the tooth. I've had 4 root canals - I think my oldest is 5 years old. I've had absolutely no problem with any of them and don't expect to. If they are done properly, they should last a very long time.
 
carole

carole

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I have had a few rct's one is about 30 years old and has had no problems. I had another that lasted for about 20 years. I had a couple done about three years ago one was fine with no problems the other failed straight away but was re-treated and has been fine since.

I had a deep filling that lasted about 6 years which is the time the dentist told me it would when he did it, are you sure you aren't mixing deep fillings up with rct's in the 5 to 6 year time scale.

I would always try and keep the teeth I have because I have lost quite a few of my back teeth over the years. If it is a back tooth and no other gaps you will probably still be able to eat etc... without it. But you have to consider that if you lost other teeth some time down the line and this tooth could have been saved you may be glad you didn't extract it.

Like you say it is your decision, I hope the replies you have had have helped you come to that decision. There is no right or wrong decision, the one you make is the right one. Maybe the dentist would let you pay in instalments to make a rct easier to afford.

All the best to you :butterfly::butterfly:
 
D

DFC16

Junior member
Joined
Dec 1, 2015
Messages
7
Thank you both for the advice! I've decided I will go for the rct and try to save the tooth.

Carole, no it was a relative who told me about their root canal failing and how he had to extract after 5 yrs but he also mentioned he's twice my age and the rct was done pretty late on.

I had a long think about it. It's very common for the older generation in Asia to just pull out their infected teeth because the cost of dental healthcare is exorbitant so both my parents said to just pull.

However, I see it differently now. I had a think: I can at my age work to earn the money back - I may not be in such a great predicament when I am retired on a measly pension at 60 with few teeth left!

I will be paying for the rct and crowning separately to help spread out the costs.

Very expensive Christmas for me! But now there's the other thing... fearing the rct!!
 
FearfulInMA

FearfulInMA

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I'm glad you've been able to make a decision you feel good about! Do you know what you are most afraid of about having a root canal? Would it help to know what will happen?
 
D

DFC16

Junior member
Joined
Dec 1, 2015
Messages
7
I'm glad you've been able to make a decision you feel good about! Do you know what you are most afraid of about having a root canal? Would it help to know what will happen?

Well, I guess I am most afraid about things going wrong. Is it possible for things to go wrong? I know a tonne of things could complicate a surgical extraction of wisdom tooth but I have not seen many people mention anything about rcts...
 
T

Torrentula81

Member
Joined
Aug 30, 2015
Messages
26
You will see posts where some have had no issues 10 years down the road (which is the life expectancy of a root canal) while others a year later it's another root canal on the same tooth or even extraction. In the end it seems to be a roll of dice.

I haven't been the dentist since childhood. 2 teeth needed to be removed. One was cracked and the other needed a root canal. I don't want to be the guy who gets told every year a new tooth needs another 2k investment to die with my original teeth in my mouth. If a tooth is that far gone, I want it removed. If I chose to do so at a later date for the an extra say $500 you can get an implant for the cost of root canal and crown. Personally I wouldn't do if I needed bone graft as it increases implant failure rate. When you factor in root canal odds of re-treatment, failure rate (estimated 5-15 percent vs 2 percent), and crown replacement it's probably the same cost of an implant averaged out.

Reading up about this stuff I kept seeing a phrase that I feel is misleading. It's "A root can/could last you a life time if done properly and good care is taken." Those sites won't say the average is around 10 years. Just that it could last a lifetime. They aren't likely to list failure rates and life expectancy on the same page that is selling the product. Same can be said about implants but from what I can find, implants are at least 2 to 3 times longer lasting and less failure rates for the same price.

I'm not sure how much credit to give to the flood of articles about root canals being bad for you're health but I do think it's healthier to have the tooth removed vs kept in. Nerves are important since it's a way for us to know if something is wrong. I would guess it's possible for a root canal tooth to be infected and be unnoticed since there is no nerve. I would think implant would be healthier then a root canal since it would be a solid object vs a breeding ground of a dead tooth.

Really I don't think there is a right or wrong. Just hope for the best. From what I have read getting a crown put on is very important. It would suck to have the root canal done, have it chip when eating something, and have to have it removed anyways. If it wasn't a molar I wouldn't even hesitate on having it removed while other people are very much attached to their teeth. Maybe root canal is the best choice. I just feel people aren't getting the whole story when talking about root canals. It's happy joy joy without the facts or questioning the info we are told. Lastly I'm just a regular person and could be totally wrong about what I posted so do you're own research vs taking my word for it.
 
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