In most cases, teeth that have previously received endodontic treatment will last as long as your natural teeth. However, in some cases, a previous treatment may fail to heal or pain may persist. An endodontic specialist is best qualified to diagnose and treat previously treated teeth that continue to cause discomfort.
As occasionally happens with any medical or dental procedure, a tooth may not heal as expected after initial treatment for a variety of reasons:
Narrow or curved canals were not treated during the initial procedure
Complicated canal anatomy went undetected in the first procedure
The placement of the crown or other restoration was delayed following the endodontic treatment
The restoration did not prevent saliva or bacteria from contaminating the tooth
In other cases, a new problem can jeopardize a tooth that was successfully treated. For example:
New decay can expose the root canal filling material to bacteria, causing a new infection in the tooth
A loose, cracked, or broken crown or filling can expose the tooth to new infection
A tooth sustains a fracture
At Integrative Endodontics of Palm Beach, endodontic retreatment is very similar to the original root canal treatment. The main difference is that, in addition to removing the infected tissue, your doctor will also need to remove old filling material and any posts, crowns, or other obstacles in the prior pulp space to be able to successfully disinfect and seal the area of the root canal. Whenever possible, it is best to save your natural tooth. Retreated teeth can function well for years, even for a lifetime. Advances in technology are constantly changing the way root canal treatment is performed, so it is likely your endodontist may use new techniques that were not available when you had your first procedure.