A root canal is a procedure done to remove a damaged or rotted tooth root. This can help save a tooth, preventing it from having to be pulled. Unfortunately, not every root canal is successful. In some cases, the tooth can't be salvaged and must be pulled. In other cases, a second root canal or other endodontic procedure may need to be performed. If you have had a root canal and are worried it may not have been successful, here are a few questions you may have.
Is There Anything That Can Be Done to Make a First Root Canal More Successful?
It is estimated that 85 to 97 percent of all initial root canals are successful. However, this means that somewhere between 3 and 15 percent of all root canals fail. This may leave you wondering why this happens and what, if anything, you can do to help make your first root canal a success.
The best way to ensure your first root canal is successful is to find an experienced dentist or endodontist. Ask dental professionals what their success and failure rate is when it comes to root canals. The lower their failure rate, the better. The reason this is important is because the top five reasons root canals are not successful are due to issues that a dental professional failed to correct. This includes missing a canal, incompletely treating a canal, leaving bacteria-infected tissue in place, failing to treat a root fracture, and failing to properly control bacteria leakage after the procedure.
Prior to and after a root canal, it is also important that you follow your dental professional's instructions. This may include taking an antibiotic, keeping your mouth clean and seeking follow-up treatment to ensure everything is healing correctly. Failure to do all of this can also result in an unsuccessful root canal or infection.
Should You Still Experience Tooth Pain After a Root Canal?
After having a root canal performed, it is not uncommon to have pain in the hours and days after the procedure. However, the pain should slowly fade away. If the pain is not diminishing after a few days, or is still present after about a week, you will want to be seen by the dental professional who performed your root canal. The root canal may have become infected or the procedure may not have been successful. Depending on how the tooth and gum area look and the amount of pain you are having, additional procedures may be required.
What Procedures Are Done if Pain is Experienced After the First Root Canal?
If you are still experiencing pain after your initial root canal, there are two types of procedures that may be done. The first is an apicoectomy. This procedure is done if your tooth becomes infected following a root canal, or if a prior infection won't heal. An apicoectomy involves removing infected debris from the small branches that branch off of the major canals in your root system. Once all of the infected debris is removed, the root tip is often removed. This is because the tip may contain bacteria that is preventing healing and causing or contributing to the infection. A small filling is then used to seal the end of the root.
The other procedure that may be performed is a second root canal. If the dentist or endodontist feels your symptoms are continuing because a canal was missed or not treated during your initial root canal, they may decide to go back in and complete this task. However, if all canals have been cleared, an apicoectomy is the only treatment, outside of pulling the tooth.
If you have had a root canal and are experiencing pain, you may be worried the root canal was not successful. However, it does take a few days for your tooth to begin to heal and for the pain to subside. However, if the pain does not improve, or if swelling develops, you will want to consult with the dental professional who performed the treatment right away. For more information, look at this web-site.