With the appropriate care, teeth with root canal treatments will last as long as your other natural teeth. However in several instances the initial treatment may fail to heal or pain may continue to exist. This can occur months or years after treatment. If this is the case, then your tooth will need an endodontic retreatment.
Improper healing may be caused by any number of things:
- Curved or narrow canals that were not treated during the initial treatment
- Complicated canals that went undetected during the initial treatment
- The crown or restoration was not placed within the appropriate amount of time following the procedure
- The crown or restoration that did not prevent saliva from contaminating the inside of the tooth
- A cracked or loose filling or crown that exposed the tooth to decay and new infection
- A fracture in the tooth itself
Fortunately most of these situations are treatable. Once retreatment has been selected as a solution to your problem, the doctor will reopen your tooth to gain access to the root canal filling material and remove it. She will then clean the canals and carefully examine the inside of the problematic tooth. Once cleaned, the doctor will fill and seal the canals and place a temporary filling in the tooth.
As with an initial root canal treatment, at this point, you will need to return to your dentist as soon as possible in order to have a new crown or restoration placed on the tooth to restore full functionality.