Questions

Do I need to see my dentist after a root canal?
After the root canal, you must protect the tooth by having a permanent restoration placed by you restoring dentist. A written report of you treatment along with x-rays will be sent to your restoring dentist. You should contact your dentist for the permanent restoration within a few weeks of treatment. Your tooth is more susceptible to breaking or fracturing after your root canal. You should chew on the opposite side of your mouth until your visit with your dentist. At that appointment your tooth will be restored to the proper strength.

Why should I save my tooth?
If you choose the save your tooth it will maintain space in the arch of your teeth, allow proper chewing and look the same or better than before treatment. While root canal treatment is usually preferred to extraction, some situations may dictate that you have the tooth extracted. An implant or bridge will be required to replace the tooth. This is considered during your evaluation segment of your visit.

Generally speaking, endodontic treatment is much less expensive and time consuming than having the tooth extracted and replaced with an artificial tooth. The fees associated with root canal treatment are based on how hard the root canal is to treat. Molars are generally the most difficult teeth to treat. The difficulty of treatment increases if the canals have calcified or narrowed or if the tooth has had a previous root canal.

What should I expect after my root canal?
Any discomfort resulting from a root canal can generally be managed with over the counter medications. The tooth will be sensitive to touch and chewing for a few days after treatment due to inflammation surrounding the tooth. Any temperature sensitivity will be gone after treatment. Patients normally return to work or daily routines after treatment.

What are some possible complications after my root canal?
Complications are rare, but swelling and moderate discomfort can occur. Report these problems to your endodontist promptly.

What if I continue to experience discomfort after my root canal?
There are options to relieve your symptoms. One is to retreat the root canal and another is to treat the area with a surgical procedure. Sometimes both are needed. A possible cause of the pain may be due to the root of the tooth experiencing a fracture. If this occurs an extraction may be the treatment of choice.

How long will the restored tooth last?
Your restored tooth could last a lifetime, if you continue to care for your teeth and gums. However, regular checkups are necessary. As long as the root(s) of a treated tooth are nourished by the tissues around it, your tooth will remain healthy.