Endodontic Retreatment: How Does It Save Your Tooth After A Failed Root Canal Treatment?

Dentist Articles

Although most root canal treatments are successful and can last for many years without problems or complications, some people experience problems with their teeth immediately after treatment or years later. A root canal treatment can also fail from poor oral care, mouth trauma or health complications. All of these issues allow bacteria to enter your repaired tooth and infect one or more of its roots. If your dentist suggests that you undergo endodontic retreatment to save your tooth, it's a good idea that you take their advice. Here's how endodontic retreatment works, why you need it and things you can do to alleviate the pain until you see your dental provider.

Why Do You Need Endodontic Treatment to Repair Your Failed Root Canal?

Your dentist can't use a second root canal treatment to repair the damage in your tooth, because the tooth already has an artificial crown over it and filling inside of it. To access and treat the infection successfully, your dentist needs to perform endodontic retreatment to remove the filling and artificial crown from the tooth. 

During the initial stages of your endodontic retreatment, your dentist takes in-depth X-rays of your tooth to find the exact location of the infection or abscess. An abscess generally develops at the end of a tooth's root. But as the infection grows inside it, so does the size of the abscess, which can spread to your jawbone's nerves and cause tremendous pain.

Because the abscess can burst open when the dentist removes the artificial crown over your tooth, it's critical that your dentist knows exactly where it is before removing the crown. Once your dental provider locates the infection, they can use the right dental tools to cut and remove the crown from over the tooth without harming your gums or endangering the natural crown of the tooth.

After your dentist takes the artificial crown off the tooth, they insert a special cleaning tool inside it to break down the artificial filling that replaced your tooth's nerves and blood vessels in the original endodontic treatment. Once the dentist removes the filling, they meticulously clean out the infection and refill the tooth with gutta-percha, then cover it with a new crown.  

Now that you understand why you need endodontic retreatment and how it works, you can schedule an appointment with your dentist. Until you see your dentist, take steps to ease the pain caused by your failed root canal treatment.

What Can You Do to Ease Your Pain?

Although you have an infection in your tooth, you can experience intense throbbing in your face and jaws. Your head contains a network of tiny nerves that branch off into various directions in your face, jaw and neck. Some of the nerves pass through the jaw bone below and around your infected tooth. 

You can release the fluids built up inside your facial skin and lymph vessels to alleviate the ache in your mouth and head. Lymph vessels normally filter and remove toxins from your body. However, the bacteria inside your tooth can overwhelm the vessels until they fill up with fluids and swell up around your face, head and jaws. 

Here's a simple exercise you can do right now to remove some of the pressure and tension in your face, jaw and head:

  • Dampen your face with warm water.
  • Use gentle pressure to coat your face with vitamin E oil. Vitamin E helps blood circulate into the tissues around your infected tooth and other facial tissues.
  • Place your index finger and middle finger close together, then gently make small circles around your cheeks, chin, lower jaw, and under your eyes. Don't apply too much pressure over your skin, because the lymph vessels lie just below the surfaces of it.

To drain your lymph vessels, place four fingers of each hand on your forehead, then lightly brush them downward until you reach your collar bones. Rinse your face with warm water, then pat it dry with a clean cotton towel. Perform the exercise several times a day or until your dental appointment. You should feel and see the swelling and tension ease up in your head, face and jaw. 

If you need immediate pain relief for your aching tooth, contact your dentist or visit http://www.jpdentalgroup.com.


12 November 2015

Improving My Dental Appointments

After dealing with a few root canals, I realized that it was time to take my dental hygiene a more seriously. I talked with my dentist about what I could do differently, and he was full of great suggestions that would help. He walked me through different ways to brush, floss, and take care of tartar buildup, and it was really amazing to see the difference that it made. I also started taking a fluoride supplement to strengthen my enamel. When I made it to my next appointment, my dentist was blown away with the improvement. This blog is all about improving your dental appointments by keeping your teeth healthier.