What Happens If You Have a Failed Root Canal

What Happens If You Have a Failed Root Canal

Root canal treatment is associated with a very high success rate — greater than 95% of root canals are successful. That means less than 5% of root canals fail — and when that happens, you need to have the tooth retreated.

At Compassionate Endodontists New York/NYC, our team is experienced in advanced techniques aimed at treating failed root canals in New York City patients, repairing underlying issues and restoring the tooth’s structure and function. If you think you might have a failed root canal, here’s how we can help. 

How to tell if your root canal has failed

If you’ve had a root canal, you might be wondering how to tell if it’s failed. In most cases, the tooth that’s had the root canal will have some pretty specific symptoms, similar to the symptoms it had before you had root canal treatment. 

Depending on the cause of your root canal failure, you might have tooth pain or swelling in the gum surrounding the tooth. Pain might be continual or it might get a lot worse when you bite or chew. Sometimes, a tooth with a failed root canal will be extra sensitive to hot or cold temperatures or sweet foods.

Of course, the only real way to know if your root canal has failed or if you have another issue is to schedule an office visit. During your appointment, we’ll evaluate your tooth and gum and use 3D imaging technology to see inside the tooth and to view the area around the tooth’s root.

Treating a failed root canal

Failed root canals can happen for different reasons, and to some degree, your treatment can vary, too. During your visit, we’ll map out your treatment ahead of time to ensure the best results.

In most cases, retreating a failed root canal entails numbing the tooth, then accessing the central part of the tooth. Infected tissue is removed, along with the filling material originally used in your root canal. 

Once the canal is completely cleaned, we’ll seal the canal and refill it, treating the tooth with antibiotics as needed to kill off hard-to-reach germs. Sometimes, we use a special antibiotic filling as a first step, replacing it with a “regular” filling in a week or two. Finally, the tooth is covered with a new crown.

If you have an infection at the very tip of the tooth root, we might suggest a treatment called apicoectomy. In this procedure, we access the root tip, remove infected or dead tissue, and seal the root tip to prevent future problems.

Of course, if the root canal fails because the tooth is badly fractured or damaged, retreatment might not be possible. In that case, we may suggest an extraction followed by an implant or other restoration.

Protect your natural teeth

The primary purpose of a root canal is to save a badly damaged tooth and avoid extraction. Root canal retreatment has the same aim — to help you maintain your natural smile for years to come.

If you think you might have a failed root canal, prompt treatment is essential. To have your tooth evaluated or to learn more about root canal retreatment, call 929-344-0255 or book an appointment online at Compassionate Endodontists New York/NYC today.

You Might Also Enjoy...

How Safe are Digital X-Rays?

Dental X-rays help our team ensure you get the best care for your unique oral health needs. Digital X-rays are an innovative alternative to traditional film X-rays, and they have a better safety profile, too.
Reasons Behind a Failed Root Canal

Reasons Behind a Failed Root Canal

Root canal therapy is a safe, effective, successful way to preserve a badly damaged tooth and avoid extraction. Although uncommon, root canal failures can happen. Here’s why they fail — and how we can help.
Telltale Signs of a Tooth Fracture

Telltale Signs of a Tooth Fracture

Tooth fractures are surprisingly common, and without prompt treatment, they can cause a lot of serious problems. Here are the symptoms you should look for so you can seek care as quickly as possible.

4 Important Reasons to Consider Ozone Treatment

Ozone therapy is a holistic treatment that destroys bacteria and promotes natural healing responses through the power of oxygen. Here are four important things you should know about ozone therapy and how it can improve your oral health.
What to Expect After Your Root Canal

What to Expect After Your Root Canal

If you have a root canal in your future, you might be wondering what happens after your treatment. The good news: Recovery is quick and comfortable. Here’s what to expect in the hours and days following your visit.
5 Ways to Prevent Another Root Canal

5 Ways to Prevent Another Root Canal

Root canals are important for saving badly damaged teeth — but it’d be great to avoid that damage in the first place. Here are five things you can do to help avoid the need for another root canal in your future.