After Endodontic Treatment
Endodontic treatment has now been completed. The root canal system has been sealed. However, the outer surface is sealed with a temporary restoration. A follow-up restoration must be placed to protect your tooth against fracture and decay. Please call your restorative dentist for an appointment. A complete report of treatment will be sent to your restorative dentist.
Your tooth is more prone to fracture immediately after endodontic treatment. 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 is significantly broken down above the gums, your endodontist or restorative dentist may place a post and core build-up to restore the tooth prior to a crown. Your restorative dentist and endodontist will determine the appropriate restoration to best protect your tooth.
Are There Any Potential Problems After Surgical Treatment?
- Lower teeth and nerve injury. There is a slight possibility that nerve injury can occur during root canal surgery to the lower posterior 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.
- Post-operative infections. Post-operative infections occasionally occur. Many times placing you on an antibiotic for one week will take care of the infection. Occasionally, other follow-up procedures will be needed.