Figuring out the best option for treating your tooth can be complicated with many complex variables to take into consideration, including price, pain and the time it takes to complete the treatment among others. Here’s a little chart to make it easy for you to compare the various treatment options and determine the best treatment option for you.

Root Canal

Root-end Surgery



Partial Denture

Leave Untreated
Treatment Description When soft tissue in the root of the tooth becomes inflamed, infected or injred, a root canal removes the bacteria causing the infection. If the end of a tooth’s root becomes damaged, it can be necessary to remove the damanged section. The tooth is removed and replaced with an anchored screw and a crown. A prosthetic section of teeth is created to fill the area vacated by a removed tooth. The prosthesis fits over the adjoining teeth. A denture is created to cover the area vacated by a removed tooth. The denture is anchored to the adjacent teeth. Rather than doing something about an infected tooth, you leave the tooth untreated.
Preserve Natural Tooth X X X X
Relative Cost root canal endodontic treatment root-end surgery endodontic treatment dental implants dental bridge partial denture leave tooth untreated
Relative Time root canal endodontic treatment root-end surgery endodontic treatment dental implants dental bridge partial denture N/A
Relative Discomfort
Providers Involved N/A
= Mountain View Endodontics = Your General Dentist
Treatment Considerations Healing occurs ~90% of the time following root canal treatment. When properly restored (usually with a crown), a root-canal-treated tooth can last as long as your other teeth. If roots are not cracked, healing occurs ~90% of the time when microsurgery is performed by an endodontist. Microsurgery enables access to conditions that can’t otherwise be detected or treated to promote healing. Because only the root tip is removed during surgery, your remaining tooth is usually strong and stable. An implant is often the next-best option if you can’t save your natural tooth. When placed at an appropriate time, implants can minimize bone loss that always occurs when a tooth is removed, creating a more natural appearance. A bridge usually costs less and can be completed more quickly than an implant. However, a bridge is also more difficult to keep clean and may not look as natural as your real tooth or even an implant. A partial denture is not an adequate replacement for a missing tooth, but it does provide something better than having no tooth. Partial dentures can complicate speech and eating, can be cumbersome to wear, and usually require adjustment, repair, or replacement over time. Leaving your condition untreated greatly increases the risk you will develop a dangerous infection that may require hospitalization, and in rare cases can even be fatal. You will eventually need to decide whether to save or remove the tooth.