3 Little Known Ways to Reduce the Cost of a Root Canal
Need a root canal, but worried about the expense? There are a few simple considerations to help you lower the cost of a root canal – or avoid needing one in the first place. Here’s a breakdown of the procedure’s importance and three ways to get it done at a cheaper rate.
If you need a root canal, the ramifications of ignoring it pose a serious threat. Even if you don’t have dental insurance, it’s something that must be treated. So what exactly makes root canal so important?
Underneath each of our teeth lies a bunch of nerves. These nerves are really only necessary for the formation of our teeth. After that, they essentially exist just to take up space.
Yet, this space-filling existence still serves a crucial purpose. If a nerve dies, it leaves an empty cavity in its place – creating an ample environment for bacteria to grow.
Left untreated, this bacteria poses a serious threat to the health of the mouth and gums. It may even continue to grow into the tissue surrounding the mouth, extending all the way up to the sinuses, eyes and brain. This can cause blindness, and in extreme cases, even death.
Root canal to the rescue! A root canal fills this empty pocket with a rubber-like material called gutta-percha to kill and prevent bacteria from invading.
Root canals are critical. However, there’s that one pesky problem: The price – especially for people who don’t have dental insurance. Plus, even if you do have insurance, it will likely only cover a portion of the cost, if it covers any at all. But don’t despair: There are ways to afford the procedure.
3 Ways to Get a Root Canal for Less
1. Pay at the time of treatment – Look for the dentist that offers special discounts for patients who pay at the time of treatment. These discounts vary depending on how much the procedure costs.
For example, at Family Dental Care, we give a 10 percent discount for paying the day of treatment. For treatments costing over $5,000, we’ll give you a 15 percent discount. From there, the discounts increase by 1 percent for every $5,000 up to $30,000 ($10,000 = 16 percent, $15,000 = 17 percent, etc.).
2. Avoid getting referred to a specialist – Dentists who are unable to adequately treat a root canal will often refer patients to a specialist. In general, specialists charge for both the initial exam as well as the procedure, in addition to typically charging more for treatment than dentists.
3. Take care of your teeth in the first place – The easiest way to avoid high root canal costs? Avoid high root canal costs? Avoid one entirely. We’ve included this point because with the correct knowledge and oral hygiene, root canals are nearly completely preventable.
The best way to prevent root canals is to prevent decay, or to address it before it reaches the inner level of the tooth.
First and foremost, brush twice daily and regularly floss. Then, regularly schedule dental appointments (twice a year). A dentist can identify any new decay, including cavities, and mitigate it before it causes further tooth destruction or trauma to the nerve tissue.
In some cases, root canals are necessary to treat teeth that have been damaged due to trauma. The key here is to avoid trauma. This might include having your bite adjusted or wearing a night guard.
Lastly, don’t hesitate to see your dentist if you have any unusual mouth pain at all. Some symptoms of nerve erosion include:
*Tooth sensitivity to hot
*Tooth sensitivity upon biting or releasing your bite
*Spontaneous tooth pain or throbbing
*Headache medications not working
*Hard time sleeping
*If putting cold water on your tooth gives it relief
*Lingering pain for minutes or hours
Don’t wait for the pain to become excruciating or long-lasting. Any sensitivity that lasts merely a few seconds could indicate early warning signs that may eventually lead to needing a root canal.
You can’t let price stand in the way of undergoing a root canal procedure; they’re far too important to ignore. Instead, consider our advice on how you can lower the cost of a root canal, or better yet, avoid needing one in the first place.