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Pacific Coast Smiles | Retreatment in Santa Maria

General and Cosmetic Dentistry

426 E. Barcellus

Suites 101 & 102
Santa Maria , CA 93454
(805) 925-8767

Retreatment

 

With proper care, most teeth that have had endodontic (root canal) treatment can last as long as other natural teeth. Root canals performed by endodontists (root canal specialists) have a 95% success rate. In some cases, however, a tooth that has received endodontic treatment fails to heal. Occasionally, the tooth becomes painful or diseased months or even years after successful treatment.

Why do I need retreatment?

As occasionally happens with any dental or medical procedure, a tooth may not heal as expected after initial treatment for a variety of reasons:

Narrow or curved canals were not treated during the initial procedure.
Complicated canal anatomy went undetected in the first procedure.
The placement of the crown or other restoration was delayed following the endodontic treatment.
The restoration did not prevent salivary contamination to the inside of the tooth.
In other cases, a new problem can jeopardize a tooth that was successfully treated.


For example:

New decay can expose the root canal filling material to bacteria, causing a new infection in the tooth. A loose, cracked or broken crown or filling can expose the tooth to a new infection. A tooth sustains a fracture. Retreatment is performed in two visits and involves the following:

  • At the initial visit our Doctors will examine the tooth, take x-rays and discuss your treatment options. If you and your Doctor choose retreatment, the retreatment will be scheduled at that time for a future date.
  • At the retreatment appointment our Doctor will administer local anesthetic to numb the tooth. After the tooth is numb, our Doctor will reopen your tooth to gain access to the root canal filling material. In many cases, complex restorative materials (crown, post and core material) must be disassembled and removed to permit access to the root canals.
  • After removing the canal filling, our Doctor can clean the canals and carefully examine the inside of your tooth using a microscope, or Loupes, searching for any additional canals or unusual anatomy that requires treatment.
  • After cleaning the canals, our Doctor will fill and seal the canals and place a temporary filling in the tooth. Post space may also be prepared at this time.
  • After our Doctor completes retreatment, you may have a new crown or other restoration placed on the tooth to protect and restore it to full function.
  • If the canals are unusually narrow or blocked, you may be referred to an endodontist - he or she may recommend endodontic surgery.