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Jane asked...

I have a problem with my teeth.

Tags: Dental , Teeth

I have a problem with my teeth. My MHS said they didnt think they were capable of performing rott canal tretment on a tooth that had an infection and where the cap was always falling out so they referred me private. I have had the root canal treatment but it failed the first 2 times, then he sent me away and said come back in 2 months time. I still dont know if this treatment has worked as he hasnt inpected it and wants me to wait 2 months until he does, even though the first 2 times he said it would set after 48 hours. My crown has now fell out again twice in a week ( I am using Dentek from the chemist to cement it back in each time. I am just scared of losing the actual crown when it falls out as my NHS dentist said they will not be able to give me a new crown until they know the root canal treatment has worked first. Is this all correct as why doesnt my private dentist made sure its worked this time instead of making me wait 2 month for the result so then I can go back to my NHS dentist for a new crown. Is this all the correct procedure please?

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The answer

Root canal treatment can be a complex and demanding procedure. It involves the removal of infected nerve tissue and blood vessels that reside inside the root canal of a tooth. Then there is a process of shaping and cleaning the root canals and finally placing of the root filling to seal it. Once this is done and the tooth is free of symptoms and infection then a crown or other suitable restoration can be placed.

There are many variables that can affect the success of root canal treatment such as the anatomy of the roots, the age of the tooth, the surrounding gum health, the amount of tooth structure present. Other factors such as who carries out the treatment e.g. a specialist can provide a significantly higher success rate, the instruments used, the equipment available for the procedure e.g. a specialist may have advanced facilities, the type of root filling material used. Many factors can affect how successful this procedure will be. If your NHS dentist did not feel that they could not carry out the procedure then they have done the right thing to refer you to someone who can and who has the right experience. If the procedure was carried out twice then this tooth is clearly very demanding and the dentist seems to be trying hard to achieve success. (usually if a root canal treatment is not successful then extracting the tooth is the next step). Waiting for two months or more, sometimes up to six months can be a sensible way to proceed. Your dentist is trying to ensure that there is no trouble with the root canal treatment before making a crown. If your crown keeps falling out then you might ask your NHS dentist if they might replace it temporarily with something a little stronger.

There is no way of predicting if a root canal treatment will be successful and if successful for how long. The person who carried it out might provide some guidance on this as they carried out the procedure.


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