Root canals are a common dental procedure used to treat an infection in the center of a tooth and save it from extraction. However, there are certain circumstances that may require a second root canal on the same tooth. These include when the canals are too narrow or calcified for the dentist to notice, when salivary contamination prevents proper healing, when the tooth is damaged during the procedure, or when gum disease progresses enough to endanger the tooth. Additionally, if there is an obstruction in the teeth, such as a filling or other tooth, that prevents the dentist from fully performing the procedure, it can result in a failed root canal.
The last symptom of root canal insufficiency is a bloody, pus-filled discharge in the area surrounding the gums of the treated tooth. If any of these symptoms are present, it's likely that you have a failed root canal and need to seek treatment as soon as possible. An additional endodontic treatment, called retreatment (a second endodontic procedure), can be performed, which could also allow you to keep your tooth for life. This involves removing the original contents of the crown and canals and exploring the tooth and remaining internal root structure. However, if you've had a faulty endodontic and there's no way to remedy the situation, extraction and a dental implant might be the best option. It's important to get a second opinion on the condition of your tooth and determine if a dental implant or endodontic treatment is the best follow-up.
Even if you're still trusting your dentist (and they're not going to refer you to a specialist, which might also be appropriate), it's still wise to get another opinion. Fortunately, there are dentists in Phoenix, AZ that offer sedation dental services and same-day emergency consultations to make treatments such as root canals as comfortable and effective as possible.