Cost To Kill Tooth Nerve

Written & Reviewed by Dr David Chen

The average cost to kill a tooth nerve is $1100 if you don’t have any insurance. That is how much it would cost to get a root canal. Although if you do have insurance, they should cover more than half of the cost.

madam molar - endo ice

Alternatively, you can also kill the nerve of your tooth with an extraction instead of a root canal. The benefit of choosing this surgical procedure is that the costs would be significantly less.

So, have you decided which procedure you want to go with? If not, we’ll explain all of the costs involved so maybe that’ll give you a better idea of what to expect and which one to choose.

Cost to remove nerve from tooth

The average cost to kill a tooth nerve with a root canal is about $1100 and that is without any dental insurance.

The exact cost for you will differ depending on which tooth needs treatment and also the cost of living in your area.

  • Tooth type affects cost because posterior teeth will have more nerves while anterior teeth will have less nerves. More nerves to be killed equates to a higher cost.
  • A low cost of living (LCOL) area will cost less while a high cost of living (HCOL) area will cost more.
Tooth TypeAverage CostLCOLHCOL
Anterior teeth$900$700$1300

What to expect for procedure:

  1. Local anesthesia to numb the tooth.
  2. Place rubber dam for protection and isolation.
  3. Drill an access opening to reach the pulp.
  4. Kill the tooth nerve by removing it with endo files.
  5. Disinfect the canals.
  6. Place root canal filling material.
  7. Insert temporary filling.

Don’t forget that after the root canal is completed you still need to get a core build up and a crown to protect it. Those are additional costs which you should factor in.

Cost with insurance

The average cost for a root canal with dental insurance is $220 and that is if you have 80% coverage for endodontic procedures. Typically, most PPO dental insurances do cover root canals at 80%.

However, your plan may cover more or it may also cover less. If you want to be sure you should check with your dentist or give your insurance a call to find out.

Cost to remove nerve along with tooth

The average cost to kill a tooth nerve with an extraction is $350 without any dental insurance. The precise cost will differ depending on the cost of living in your area.

  • A low cost of living (LCOL) area will cost less
  • A high cost of living (HCOL) area will cost more.
ProcedureAverage CostLCOLHCOL
Tooth Extraction$350$250$450

What to expect for procedure:

  1. Numb the tooth with local anesthesia.
  2. Severe the tooth ligaments (PDL).
  3. Luxate the tooth by elevating it.
  4. Remove the tooth from mouth with forceps.
  5. Bite on gauze until it stops bleeding.

After the tooth has been removed you should consider replacement options. You can get a dental bridge, implants, or even a partial denture.

Cost with insurance

On average, dental PPO insurances should cover about 80% of this surgical procedure. That means you can expect to pay approximately $70 if you have insurance.

Some insurance plans may cover more while others may cover less, it all depends on your specific plan.

Root canal vs Extraction

Perhaps you’re having trouble deciding between the two so we’ve put together a comparison table. That way you can see all of the pros and cons laid out in front of you.

Root CanalTooth Extraction
Average cost$1100$350
Recovery time1 day3-5 days
PainMinimal post-op pain5-7 days of discomfort
Insurance coverage80%80%
Type of procedureSaving teethTaking out teeth

Other alternatives

Unfortunately there aren’t any other alternatives that can permanently kill the nerve of your tooth. A root canal and an extraction are the only two dental procedures which can do it.

Well I suppose you could also just wait for the tooth to die on its own naturally. However, that could be a very painful and long drawn out process. Most people can’t bear through the pain and seek treatment before they get to that stage.

Home remedies

A less expensive option to temporarily alleviate a toothache is to use home remedies. They may be able to numb the tooth nerve momentarily but the pain will return because the remedies are not a permanent treatment. Only your dentist can eliminate the pain permanently.


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