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Root canal vs extraction: A comparison from our dentist in Glasgow West End


After suffering from a dental infection, if you are like most people, you will never want to go through that experience again. And if that means having the offending tooth removed, then so be it!

Dental infections are common in the UK and, while many people would opt for a full extraction of the tooth to treat the infection, this can present an obvious aesthetic difficulty, especially if it is one of your front teeth.

But many dental patients are lukewarm to the idea of having the alternative procedure performed which can restore the tooth and remove the infection at the same time. Endodontics or as it is more commonly known, the root canal is a procedure which removes infected debris from the pulp of the tooth and restores the tooth’s strength with either a crown or a filling. As effective as this is at treating an infection, few patients want to undertake it due to rumours of it weakening the tooth.

At Buttercup 7 Day Dental, our Glasgow dentist West End is proud to be able to restore your smile with endodontics and can personally attest to the effectiveness of this treatment. As a team, we have helped thousands of patients overcome oral infections and keep their smiles with root canals so when you come to us, you can be assured that you are in safe hands.

In this article, our Glasgow dentist West End compares root canals to extractions, to show you which option has a better long-term outcome.

The procedure

When our Glasgow dentist West End tells you that you need to have a root canal, you may be worried as to what it entails.

Depending on the tooth, you may require either 1 or 2 sessions and oddly, it is quite similar to a filling; the tooth is numbed, drilled, some precision cleaning is performed and then a filling is placed. For a single-rooted tooth, this can take up to an hour.

An extraction simply involves a numbing and the tooth is removed- it would be concerning if it took an hour.


Once the numbing has worn off, there may be some tenderness around the root canal site. But an extraction site will be more tender and will take longer to heal- there may even be stitches which require removing.

Of course, an extraction is prone to succumbing to a second infection as it is an open wound. Yikes!


An extracted tooth is going to cause issues with oral functionality, aesthetics and can even lead to surrounding teeth becoming misaligned due to jaw shrinkage. This can be alleviated with a dental implant, but that is a rather expensive procedure.

A root canal has a 96% success rate after 5 years and is unlikely to need any other procedures performed. The tooth remains functional, aesthetically pleasing and is not likely to need any other procedures to keep it in place. So, our team will strongly advise any patient to have a root canal over an extraction.

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