Man holding jaw from tooth pain

Root Canal Infected? There’s Still Hope!

When a tooth has decayed or broken to the point the nerve (‘root canals’) are infected, a root canal procedure can save your tooth and extend its life span. Most first-time root canals are completed and heal without issue. 


Occasionally, a root canaled tooth can become re-infected for a variety of reasons (such as breakdown of the seal, decay, or a persistent pocket of infection that the immune system is unable to clean out). In these cases, additional steps to remove the infection may be required. However, the vast majority of root canaled teeth last for a long time, especially if such teeth are crowned when indicated in order to stop the tooth from breaking easily.


What Causes Post-Root Canal Decay?

Teeth which have had root canals can get decay (cavities) just like any other tooth. There are a variety of reasons why your tooth may begin to decay even after a root canal treatment has been performed. Some common reasons include:

  • Delay in Placing the Crown – The crown that is used to restore most teeth after a root canal may have been delayed in placement, which gave bacteria ample time to re-infect the tooth.
  • Poor oral hygiene and/or diet – The seal around a filling or a crown can break down due to plaque and tartar thus causing a failure. Additionally, foods that are high in sugar promote cavities.


Infection is No Reason to Lose Hope

If you do have a recurring infection, it does not mean that the tooth has to be extracted. Instead, your family dentist in Red Deer will re-examine the infection and explore options for treatment. Sometimes, all it takes is a simple root canal to remove or correct the issue that caused the infection. If the treatment is complicated (such as if you have very curved canals), you may be referred to an endodontist who is a specialist in dealing with complicated root canals.


Is your root canal tooth infected? Do not despair. Instead, call Parkland Mall Dental Centre at 403-342-1118 to schedule your examination. We are currently accepting new dental patients and are here to help. Fill out an online contact form today with your oral health concerns.


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