When Is A Root Canal Retreatment Necessary?

Dr. Derek and male patientRoot canal retreatment becomes necessary under certain circumstances:

  • Persistent Pain: If you continue to experience pain or discomfort in a tooth that has previously undergone a root canal, you may need a retreatment to address the underlying issue.
  • Reinfection: In some cases, the treated tooth may become reinfected due to new dental issues or inadequate healing after the initial root canal.
  • Incomplete Treatment: If the original root canal treatment was incomplete or there was a missed canal, retreatment is advised to thoroughly clean and seal the affected area.
  • Broken Dental Restoration: Over time, a filling or crown can get damaged, allowing bacteria to re-enter the root canal system requiring retreatment.

Benefits of Root Canal Retreatment

Root canal retreatment offers several benefits:

  • Preservation of Your Natural Tooth: Retreatment allows you to retain your natural tooth, avoiding the need for extraction and costly tooth replacement options.
  • Pain Relief: It effectively alleviates pain and discomfort associated with root canal issues, restoring oral health and well-being.
  • Cost-Effective: In comparison to tooth extraction and replacement, retreatment is often a more cost-effective option.
  • Improved Oral Health: By addressing the underlying problem, retreatment contributes to better overall oral health.

How Does Root Canal Retreatment Work?


CBCT computerThe process begins with a thorough evaluation by Dr. Peek and his team at Eastern Iowa Endodontics. This evaluation includes reviewing your dental history, taking a CBCT, and new X-rays to identify the source of the problem. Dr. Peek’s expertise plays a crucial role in accurately diagnosing the issue before treatment.

Access Opening

Once the problem is identified, Dr. Peek puts a rubber dam over the tooth and makes a small opening in the crown of the tooth. This opening allows access to the root canal system and the previously treated area.

Cleaning and Disinfection

With precise instruments, Dr. Peek carefully removes the existing filling material from the canals within your tooth. He then uses the GentleWave® System because it is an advanced endodontic platform that delivers superior cleaning and disinfection to all parts of the root canal system ensuring the removal of any remaining bacteria or infected tissue. This step offers minimal instrumentation that preserves your tooth structure leading to reduced postoperative pain and faster healing.

Re-Filling and Sealing

After cleaning and disinfection, the root canals are re-filled and sealed with a biocompatible material to prevent further infection. Dr. Peek’s expertise is evident in this step, as the precise filling and sealing of the canals are essential for a successful outcome.


In many cases, a new dental crown is suggested for the treated tooth. This crown restores the tooth’s functionality and provides additional protection. Dr. Peek writes a letter to your general dentist recommending this coverage for your tooth establishing a comfortable bite and a natural appearance.

Root Canal Retreatment Aftercare

After a root canal retreatment, it’s essential to follow the post-treatment care instructions:

  • Pain Management: You may experience mild discomfort, which can be managed with over-the-counter pain relievers as recommended by Dr. Peek.
  • Oral Hygiene: Maintain proper oral hygiene practices, including regular brushing and flossing twice daily for two minutes.
  • Follow-Up Appointments: Attend any follow-up appointments scheduled by Dr. Peek to monitor the healing process.
  • Dietary Considerations: Avoid hard or sticky foods on the treated tooth until it’s fully restored with a crown.
  • Contact Your Endodontist: If you experience unusual symptoms or discomfort, contact Dr. Peek for a re-evaluation.

Why Choose Dr. Peek for Root Canal Retreatment?

Dr. Derek PeekSpecialized Training and Certification

Dr. Derek Peek’s path toward becoming a respected board-certified endodontist began with his specialized training and commitment to excellence. Becoming a Board-Certified endodontist, a distinction that reflects his dedication to the field shows his hard work and expertise to pass all aspects of the boarding process. Not all endodontists are Board-Certified. Dr. Peek continues to pursue greatness and stays at the forefront of his field through ongoing education and training. 

Active Involvement in Professional Organizations

Dr. Peek’s dedication to his profession extends to his active involvement in organizations such as the American Board of Endodontics (ABE), the American Association of Endodontics (AAE), the American Dental Association (ADA), and the Iowa Dental Association (IDA). His participation in these organizations reflects his commitment to upholding the highest standards of care and staying informed about the latest advancements in endodontics.

Compassion and Patient-Centered Care

Dr. Peek’s passion for helping others extends to his dental practice. He makes sure each patient receives the attention and treatment they deserve. Schedule your appointment today and experience the difference that Dr. Peek and his team can make in your dental care journey.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is a root canal retreatment painful?

Root canal retreatments aren’t painful. Endodontists use local anesthesia to ensure you’re comfortable during the procedure. You may experience mild discomfort afterward, which can be managed with over-the-counter pain relievers and/or antibiotics.

Can a root canal retreatment be done in one visit?

The duration of a root canal retreatment can vary depending on the complexity of the case. Most cases can be completed in one visit, but others may require multiple appointments. Dr. Peek will provide a clear timeline during your initial consultation.

What is the success rate of root canal retreatment?

When performed by an experienced endodontist, root canal retreatments have a high success rate. They can save your natural tooth and alleviate your pain and discomfort. Success rates can vary based on individual cases, but Dr. Peek will discuss the expected outcome during your consultation.

Does insurance cover the cost of root canal retreatment?

Dental insurance policies vary, so it’s best to check with your provider to determine if root canal retreatment is covered. In many cases, insurance may cover a portion of the cost, but the extent of coverage will depend on your plan. 

Schedule Your Root Canal Retreatment with Dr. Peek Today!

Our skilled team, led by our top board-certified endodontist, offers top-tier expertise, state-of-the-art facilities, the newest technologies, and personalized patient care. If you’re experiencing dental issues that require root canal retreatment, you can trust Dr. Peek and his team to provide the highest level of care. 

Whether you’re experiencing persistent discomfort, have concerns about a previous root canal treatment, or would like a second opinion, Dr. Peek is one of the best root canal specialists in Cedar Rapids, IA.

Schedule your endodontic retreatment consultation today by calling (319) 382-8002 and take the first step towards a healthier, pain-free smile. We welcome new and existing patients from all over the state of Iowa.