You may be wondering if you should have a root canal or dental implant. It`s a common question we are asked every day.  It’s a very important decision and the best thing it to discuss with our dentists to help find the right option for you. It’s important to fully comprehend each method.

Success Rates:

Both procedures can have the similar success rate but there is no crystal ball available to us. With implants and root canal treatments we are relying on your healing capacity for the best results. If you healing isn`t optimal the results of either may be affected. Occasionally there may be a crack in the tooth which is impossible to detect but may cause failure. Other times there may be a very resistant infection which is impossible to treat. With a root canal treatment what is left of the tooth may be very weak after treatment depending on the anatomy. That means there may be a higher risk of fracture over time.

With implants there is a slightly increased chance of problems from tooth grinding and bone infection than there would be with root canal treatment. It is possible for example to have a tooth taken out which could have been saved by root canal treatment and then have the implant fail. Typical success rates for root canal treatment is over 90% and for implants over 95%. This varies considerably depending on the unique conditions in your mouth so ask your dentist which they would recommend.


Dental implants involve extracting the infection tooth and replacing it with an artificial one. The implant itself is usually made of titanium and secures a crown. Root canal treats infections in the tooth’s root, clearing bacteria from the canals. After the dentist removes all infection he fills the tooth with a material to support the tooth -Usually  a permanent crown will be placed on the tooth for strength and highest success.

Aesthetics : 

If you choose dental implants over a root canal it should not make a big difference to the appearance afterwards. Sometimes a tooth which has been root canal treated can darken over time. In those cases you may need to consider veneers, crowns or internal bleaching.

How will I feel afterwards?

For either procedure you will usually be extremely numb so should not feel any pain during the procedure. After a root canal it can vary a lot as to how you feel. Most people are fine afterwards and take a few painkillers with no problems. The very occasional person can have a bad reaction and may get severe swelling/pain etc for a few days after.

After dental implants most people find pain is gone within 24-48 hours. Again the very occasional person can get bad swelling or pain. With implants it often depends on where the implant is being placed, your healing capacity etc. If you are having alot of implants you are more likely to be sore than with only one for instance.

Though you have a lot to consider when choosing a treatment option, the most important thing is to schedule an appointment as soon as possible. Our dentists here at Seapoint Clinic will be able to answer all the questions you have and make you feel better. The longer you leave an infected tooth the more damage will be done and the harder to repair it.

For more information on dental implants and root canal treatment you can find all the information here.

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