When faced with an infected tooth, a root canal is a common treatment for restoring your oral health. Root canals have a very high success rate, meaning that once you have received treatment, your tooth can function normally without any further issues. While the success rate is high, there are some instances in which a root canal can fail. Failure can lead to serious complications, including severe pain. If your root canal has failed, Carolina Mountain Endodontics can perform root canal re-treatment.
What is a Root Canal?
A root canal is a common treatment used for removing an infection from the interior of a tooth. The procedure involves removing the infected pulp as well as shaping and cleaning the canals. This is all done through a small access hole that is drilled in the top of the tooth. After the tooth is cleaned, it is disinfected. The interior of the tooth is filled with a specialized material that seals the canals and the crown is placed. The crown restores strength to the tooth and prevents the potential for any new bacteria to get inside.
How Can a Root Canal Fail?
Root canals do have a high success rate, but there are instances in which the treatment can fail. Common causes of root canal failure include:
|Narrow or curved canals may not have been properly cleaned and disinfected during the original treatment.
|You may have more complicated canal anatomy that was missed before receiving your original root canal.
|Saliva could have gotten inside the tooth during treatment, contaminating the area.
|The crown was not placed soon enough after the root canal was performed.
|The crown may not have been placed properly.
|The crown becomes damaged.
|A new fracture may have occurred in the tooth, such as a root fracture.
|The treated tooth may have developed new decay.
Performing a Root Canal Re-Treatment
A successfully treated tooth will feel and function just like any other healthy tooth. If your root canal fails, however, it is essential that re-treatment is performed. A good indication that something is wrong is feeling pain in the previously treated tooth. If you experience pain, it is essential that you seek treatment immediately. Without treatment, your oral health, and overall health are put in jeopardy. Root canal re-treatment can typically be completed in one to three visits.
After a local anesthetic is provided, a rubber dam is placed around the affected tooth to isolate it. The dam also helps to prevent contamination. We then remove the crown and the materials inside the tooth. Small tools are used to clean out and reshape the canals. X-rays may be taken to ensure that the canals have thoroughly been cleaned. Depending upon your specific situation, a medicated material may be placed inside the tooth, and a temporary crown placed.
The medicated material helps to eliminate any lingering bacteria. At your next visit, the material is removed, and the tooth is cleaned again. Finally, the filling material is placed inside the tooth, and a crown is placed. In many cases, a re-treated tooth can function normally for many years, even for the rest of your life. Re-treating the tooth is always preferable to the option of extraction. Re-treating the tooth allows it to stay in its socket, helping to protect the health and structure of your jawbone. If a tooth treated with a root canal is beginning to exhibit symptoms of failure, root canal re-treatment may be needed.
For more information, and to schedule your consultation at one of our locations, call Carolina Mountain Endodontics today at (828) 627-1999.