In a perfect world, every tooth treated with root canal therapy would go on to heal successfully and last for the rest of the patient’s life. Unfortunately, this doesn’t always happen. Root Canal treated teeth may become pained or diseased again months or even years down the road after their initial treatment. Thankfully, experienced endodontic specialists like Dr. Gell and Dr. Watts can give these teeth a second chance.
Endodontic retreatment is designed to reinvigorate healing efforts and rescue the ailing tooth. If you are experiencing concerning pain or discomfort in a tooth that’s previously undergone root canal therapy, don’t hesitate to contact Afton Endodontics in Concord, NC for assistance.
There are several possible reasons why retreatment could become necessary, depending on the patient’s unique circumstances:
After thoroughly assessing the tooth in question, our endodontists will carefully reopen the structure in order to gain access to the filling material. After eliminating it from within the canal, the area will be cleaned thoroughly once more, and our state-of-the-art microscope will help us discover any abnormal anatomy or previously hidden root canals.
Once we’re satisfied that the canals are fully cleansed, they will be covered with a filling material and sealed to prevent further exposure to infection. If you have overly narrow root canals or if they’re blocked in any way, endodontic surgery may be recommended for a more confident seal.
Finally, patients will need to return to their general dentist in order to have a new dental crown or similar restoration crafted. This will replenish the tooth’s appearance, natural shape, and ability to function.
Whenever possible, we strongly encourage patients to choose endodontic retreatment because the only other available option is the extraction of the natural tooth. Preserving your original smile will always be preferable to undergoing costly, time-consuming replacement with dental implants, bridges, or dentures. Because you’ve already invested in rescuing the ailing tooth with root canal therapy, this treatment can help you finally regain the lasting oral health and function you deserve for many years to come.
If you’re told that your root canal needs to be redone, you’ll probably have some questions about what happened to your tooth and what kind of procedure you should prepare yourself for. Dr. Gell and Dr. Watts will always take a little extra time to hear your concerns and answer your questions when it comes to endodontic retreatment. Please call us if you can’t find the answers you’re looking for below or on the rest of this page.
You’ll notice symptoms of a new infection around the tooth that was previously treated. Such symptoms include tenderness or swelling, persistent pain, a pimple-like bump forming on the gums, and loose teeth. In other words, your tooth might once again be experiencing many of the symptoms that affected it when it was infected the first time. It’s important to act quickly if you notice these warning signs; endodontic retreatment needs to be performed as soon as possible if you want to have any chance of correcting the damage and saving the tooth.
Root canal therapy has a success rate that’s anywhere between 85% and 97%; as such, it’s very uncommon for the procedure to fail. However, just because it’s rare doesn’t mean it’s impossible, so it’s important to keep an eye out for warning signs of a new infection. Also, it’s possible for root canal therapy to be successful in the short term but fail in the long run due to new tooth decay or an injury damaging the tooth and exposing the insides to bacteria once again. In other words, just because there doesn’t seem to be a problem with your treated tooth in the weeks after your procedure doesn’t mean there won’t be any issues later down the line.
As soon as you realize your dental crown is broken or has fallen off, call our office immediately. It will be very easily for new bacteria to enter the now-exposed tooth, but if it’s replaced quickly, then it’s possible to avoid the need for a more complex retreatment procedure. The longer the tooth remains exposed, the greater the risk of reinfection becomes. Be sure to take care of your crown and keep an eye on what kind of state it’s in so that you can have it repaired or replaced in a timely manner should you need to.
You may experience pain and tenderness around the tooth for a few days. Until you’ve fully recovered, you should avoid biting and chewing with the affected side of your mouth. Like with regular root canal therapy, it’s possible to control your discomfort with anti-inflammatory medication like ibuprofen. You should also periodically rinse with warm salt water to keep your mouth clean. Call us right away if the symptoms persist or become more severe over time.