The Cost of a Root Canal
If the interior of your tooth has become infected, a root canal is absolutely necessary to ensure the health of your tooth — and the rest of your body. The average cost of a root canal can range from $350-600 for a front tooth, and from $500-860 for a molar. The cost covers drilling a small hole in the affected tooth, removing the infected pulp, and replace it with a clean filling.
But there are some additional factors that can impact the cost of your root canal — and may even take it well beyond the $350 to $860 price range. Here’s what can make the price of your root canal skyrocket:
• Location of the Tooth. Teeth in the front, where there’s only one root canal, will cost significantly less than the molars in the back, which often have three or more separate canals that will need to be cleaned.
• Your Location. Where you live can have an impact on the price you pay for any kind of dental work — if you live near a large city, you can expect to pay more than someone who lives in a more rural area.
• Your Dentist’s Expertise. A general dentist will generally charge less for a root canal than an endodontist, a doctor who specializes in problems with the roots of your teeth.
• Additional Dental Work. To fully repair the tooth and strengthen what’s left, your doctor may need to create a cap or a crown, which will add an additional cost to your final bill.
Ways to Pay
Often, root canals need to be performed quickly and without warning — and so you may not have the cash on hand to cover the cost of the dental work. If you need to get a root canal, here’s where you can turn for some help in covering your costs.
• Health insurance. If you have dental insurance, most plans cover at least a portion of the cost of your root canal. Check your coverage to see how much they will pay toward your dental charges — and perhaps switch to a dentist who takes your insurance to limit the out-of-pocket cost of the procedure.
• Flexible spending account. If you set aside money each year in a flexible spending account to cover health care costs, you can use that pretax money to cover any out-of-pocket charges for your root canal.
• Financing. If you don’t have health insurance and can’t cover the cost on your own, discuss payment options with your dentist. Many will allow you to set up a payment plan to spread out the cost of the root canal over time.