Dental Implant vs Root Canal: What to Consider

Root Canal vs. Implant: What to Consider

Root canals remove the infected pulp from a tooth and replace it with a special biocompatible material, before it is capped with a crown or bridge. The root of your tooth remains intact in your jaw. With a dental implant, a metal post is put into your jawbone under your gums. When the dental implant heals, an abutment and a crown are placed on top. If you’re deciding whether to schedule a root canal or a dental implant, here are some things to consider.


For many dentists, the dental implant is the best option for tooth replacement. However, it is more expensive than a root canal and can vary in price. Root canals cost approximately $1,500 for molars. Dental implant costs $3,000 or more. For some patients, when presented with both options, they choose the root canal when possible because it is more affordable.


It takes fewer appointments and less recovery time to perform a root canal when compared to a dental implant. A dental implant needs time to heal between when the post is implanted and when the crown is put on. This requires multiple visits spaced out over time. In some situations, a root canal can be completed in a single appointment, if the crown was created before the appointment.

Condition of Tooth and Jaw

The condition of the tooth and jaw will have a significant impact on your options. A root canal requires you to still have the tooth. If you’re missing the tooth, there aren’t any roots to preserve. This means that you can’t have a root canal. For a dental implant, you need a certain amount of viable jawbone to accept the implant. Your dentist may decide that you’re not a candidate for a dental implant if you do not have adequate bone material.


Dental implants look more real and natural than a root canal. You may see the edge of a root canal near a receded gum line. However, a dental implant will look and function like a natural tooth.

How Long Procedures Last

Root canals and dental implants may not last forever. Root canals last between five and 15 years, depending on various factors including how well you take care of your teeth. Some patients are able to keep a root canal for a lifetime. However, dental implants are considered a permanent tooth replacement and can last up to 25 years.

If your dentist has given you the option of choosing a dental implant or a root canal, it can be difficult to know which procedure to choose. While dental implants are more expensive, many dentists and patients find the benefits worth it.  If you have questions about dental implants or want to schedule an appointment, please call Mid Manhattan Oral Surgery at (212) 696-2677. We’ll be happy to answer any questions you have or discuss your concerns.