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Teeth that have had a root canal, or endodontic treatment, should last as long as other natural teeth.

The success rate of root canals (performed by a specialist) is over 95%, but occasionally a tooth that has undergone treatment fails to heal or discomfort continues despite therapy. Healing is also very dependent on the success of the final restoration. It is very important to have a proper permanent seal over the root canal to guard against contamination by oral fluids and bacteria, and to protect against tooth fracture. Often times a permanent filling will be placed by the endodontist, but the referring dentist will usually complete the final seal or crown over the root canal. This permanent restoration or crown needs to be completed within an appropriate time following the procedure to insure success.

Non-surgical endodontic therapy may fail for a number of reasons other than contamination. Often times tooth decay, fracture, periodontal disease, or other factors create complications. Teeth may have complex anatomy which makes endodontic treatment very difficult. Curved or narrow canals, or canals that have been blocked by previous treatment or separated instruments may lead to possible difficulty. Dr. Loth is highly trained to assess these problems through both clinical and radiographic evaluation to determine the best course of action.

During endodontic retreatment, an opening is made on the chewing surface to reach the filling material. This existing material is removed and canal system is cleaned, disinfected, and resealed. An attempt will be made to determine the cause of failure. Occasionally when complications arise, endodontic retreatment may be combined with surgical treatment to increase the potential for success. On rare occasion, extraction may be recommended as an alternative to endodontic treatment.

If you have recently had root canal treatment, but are still having issues, contact the office of Dr. Loth today.