My family dentist did a root canal on my top right premolar in January and the tooth seemed okay at first but started giving me problems again. I got the second root canal 2 1/2 weeks ago. Everything seemed to be normal for over a week, but the pain and swelling came back later and it won’t let up. I am worried that I will need a third root canal if there is such a thing. I am also beginning to doubt my family dentist on this. I have to go back to the office Friday for him to take a look at it. Right now I’m back on antibiotics and pain medication. What are some warning signs that I should listen for before I let him do anything else to my teeth? I feel bad about this, but I just don’t have a lot of confidence in him right now. Can my tooth be saved? Thanks. Ora
Your description is that of failed root canal treatment that was followed up by a second treatment that seemed to be healing well. When you have a reasonable period of no pain at all, followed by a spike of pain, the procedure has failed again.
This is much different from getting a root canal treatment and experiencing normal pain and discomfort afterward. The sudden onset of new pain after a second root canal treatment indicates that it, too, has failed due to the infection not being completely cleared away.
Your family dentist should refer you to a specialist. If he doesn’t, you should ask for the referral. What will a specialist do? He or she might give you another root canal treatment
· First, the specialist will look for additional canals or unusual structures that might still be infected.
· After that, the specialist will clean out your tooth and use dental filler material in the tooth chamber. A dental crown will be placed on your tooth
· In the worst case, you could lose the tooth.
This is definitely an issue that should be handled by a specialist. Don’t let sentiment, or trying not to hurt your dentist’s feelings, prevent you from getting proper care.
This post is sponsored by the San Jose dentists of Hillsdale Dental Care.