Will I Need Retreatment After a Root Canal?
Most root canal treatments are successful, but sometimes the effected tooth does not heal as anticipated following initial treatment. Healing may be affected when the patient has complicated canal anatomy, the placement of a restoration, like a crown, was delayed after the root canal or the restoration did not prevent contamination to the tooth’s interior due to saliva. In some cases, re-treatment of a root canal may be required following the development of a new problem, like a broken, cracked or loose filling that exposes the tooth to infection or new decay.
When these problems occur, your dentist will discuss the re-treatment options that are best for you. During re-treatment, the tooth is reopened to expose the root canal filling material. The filling is removed, then the endodontist cleans the canals thoroughly before examining the inside of the tooth for unusual anatomy or additional canals that may also require treatment. The canals are then filled, sealed and topped with a temporary filling until a new crown or other restoration is placed to restore the tooth to its full function.
Whenever possible, saving your natural tooth is an ideal solution. With proper care, retreated teeth can function for a lifetime. Re-treatment is also a good choice for patients who had root canals done years ago. The procedure has changed due to more recent advances in technology, and re-treatment allows the endodontist to use new techniques that may not have been available during the first procedure. These new techniques may resolve any dental problems you had following the initial procedure with just one re-treatment.
About the Author
Dr Gary Leff is a nationally recognized Endodontist and root canal specialist in Northern Virginia. Connect with Dr. Leff on Google+