Root Canal Versus Extraction

Take it out or fill it in?

When a tooth becomes seriously damaged or diseased, it may seem that the best solution is to get rid of it.

An extraction represents a clean break, a fresh start and a blank canvas for rebuilding your smile with an implant or a bridge or a denture.

A dentist will carry out extractions but will always try to save your tooth if possible, and often that solution will be a root canal. A root canal will be offered if your teeth are damaged or diseased but otherwise intact. If a tooth can’t be saved, then an extraction will be recommended.

Root Canal Step By Step

If you opt for a root canal, the treatment is straightforward. While you are under local anaesthetic, your dentist will make a hole in your tooth to remove the diseased or dead pulp – the tissue inside your tooth. The empty tooth will be thoroughly cleaned and filled with a rubber-like material called gutta-percha.

A crown may be fitted on top of the tooth to add strength and improve its appearance. This whole process may take place over several visits and it will be normal to experience minor aches and pains in the area for a few days. This can be alleviated with over-the-counter painkillers.


If your tooth needs to be extracted, again, a local anaesthetic will be applied to numb the area, and the dentist will use tools to loosen the tooth and then extract it. There will be an amount of pressure on your mouth for a short while until the tooth is removed.

Afterwards, you will need to bite down on gauze to help the blood clot in your gum. After about 45 minutes, bleeding will have lessened and your face may be swollen.

Using ice packs and eating soft cool foods until the extraction site heals will minimise pain and discomfort. Swelling and pain will slowly ease after about two weeks.

Your dentist will be able to advise on your next step, whether that’s a dental implant a bridge or a removable denture.

Your Teeth Your Choice

It can be a hard choice to make between a root canal and an extraction, but you can discuss your concerns with your dentist to make sure you have the complete picture before you make your decision.

The team here at Dentistry Plus can talk you through the process and explain about the use of painkillers to ease any discomfort.

We have five branches across Joondalup, Leederville, Maddington, Leeming and Kwinana. Each dental clinic is fitted with an on-site dental laboratory and the latest in high-tech equipment such as digitally enhanced x-rays, intra-oral scanner, cameras and 3D printers.

Established in 2008, we’re the go-to dental clinic for Perth families who want quality dental work at highly competitive prices. We offer the most affordable dental implant prices in WA, guaranteed.

Dentistry Plus is covered with all health insurance funds and registered with DVA. Plus, we’re a Medibank Private Advantage plus providers so click here to book an appointment today.

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