Frequently Asked Questions

What is a root canal?
The interior of you tooth is fed by nerve and blood vessels that reside in a canal inside your root. When this becomes infected or dies, they need to be cleaned out to avoid increasing infection.

Do I really need a root canal?
That is to be determined. We have several diagnostic tests we can perform to see if you truly do need a root canal or if there is something else going on with your tooth. If we deem that you would benefit from a root canal you have a few options. One would be to do nothing. This could lead to pain and infection in the future. Two you could choose extraction. This would be followed up with either an implant, bridge or a space in your gums. Three would be to have a root canal. At your visit we will discuss these options and determine what is best in your situation.

But really, I’ve heard they are very painful…
Normally the root canal procedure is not painful. The association of pain with a root canal comes from many patients who are experiencing pain before coming into the office. Once you are numb, the procedure should not be unbearable and we will do everything possible to maximize your comfort.

How does dental insurance work?
Dental insurance is unlike medical insurance. Most policies have a calendar year benefit somewhere between $1000 and $2000 – if you use it all up during the calendar year then it is gone. If you don’t use it all up during the calendar year then it is gone.

Most plans have a tier percentage range for services covered. Basic, Restorative and Major are generally the three categories. They will then cover a percentage based on the specific plan taking deductibles into consideration as well.

What will my plan cover for treatment?
Most plans consider the endodontic exam as a restorative procedure that generally falls somewhere between 50%-80% depending on your specific plan. The only way we can guestimate what that cost will be is to contact your insurance company for an eligibility and benefits estimate.

Why do you ask for my social security number?
Many insurance companies have moved away from Member ID numbers and simply verify the member by their name, birthdate and social security number. Without this information it can hinder our office from filing claims on your behalf.

Have a question about insurance, root canals, endodontics, our office or Dr. Chapman? Email it over using the form on this page and we will happily answer it. We may even end up posting it on this page!