After your Endodontic Treatment
After endodontic treatment has been completed the root canal system will be permanently sealed, however the outer surface is sometimes sealed with only a temporary restoration. A follow-up restoration must be placed to protect your tooth against fracture and decay by your restorative dentist.
A complete report of treatment will be sent to your restorative dentist and you will need to call them to schedule an appointment.
Included in your treatment is a follow-up examination to evaluate the progress of healing in our office. This appointment will require only a few minutes and no additional fee will be charged for the first check-up visit.
Please call your general dentist for an appointment to begin protecting your tooth. This appointment should be scheduled no later then 4 weeks after your endodontic treatment is completed. Sooner is better as the supporting structures around the tooth return to normal. Your tooth is more prone to fracture immediately after endodontic treatment. The walls can sheer off or crack if your final restoration is not competed. You should chew on the other side until your restorative dentist has placed a core build-up and a protective restoration, usually a crown.
If your tooth’s strength is seriously compromised, your endodontist or restorative dentist may place a post and core build-up inside the tooth. Your restorative dentist and endodontist will determine the appropriate restoration to best protect your tooth.
Are There Any Potential Problems After Treatment?
- Lower teeth and nerve injury. There is a slight possibility that nerve injury can occur during root canal surgery to the lower posterior (back) teeth. Your endodontist is trained to assess this possibility prior to treatment and will advise you accordingly. For lower posterior teeth, the root tips may be near a nerve that supplies feeling to the lip, chin and gums. Your endodontist is trained to design your surgery to minimize the chances of damaging this nerve. Rarely, this nerve can become irritated during the process of surgery. In these cases, when the local anesthesia wears off, you may experience tingling, altered sensation or, in rare cases a complete lack of feeling in the affected tissues. Should this occur, it is usually temporary and will resolve over a period of days, weeks, or months. In rare cases these changes can be permanent and/or painful.
- Upper teeth and sinus communication. The upper teeth are situated near your sinuses and root canal surgery can result in a communication between your mouth and the adjacent sinus. Should this complication occur, it will usually heal spontaneously. We will give you special instructions if this is apparent at the time of surgery. We prefer that you don’t blow your nose for two to three days after surgery. If you have to sneeze, you should sneeze with an open mouth into a tissue. You should not create any pressure in the sinus area. If you sense a complication after surgery please contact us.
- Post-operative infections. Post-operative infections occasionally occur. This usually requires just an office visit and examination. Many times placing you on an antibiotic for one week will take care of the infection. Occasionally, other follow-up procedures will be needed.