I’m helping my adult daughter with some research. She had a root canal treatment a little over a year ago. Since then, she’s had two salivary gland infections. Her doctor cannot figure out the cause and she’s been miserable every time this happens. I am wondering if it is possible that something is leaking from her root canal treatment and causing the salivary gland infection. They are in the same area. Have you heard of this?
I’m sorry your daughter has been having so much trouble. Any type of tooth infection can spread to other parts of the body, including the salivary glands. This is in part why they are often considered dental emergencies. If the root canal treatment has failed, that would mean the infection has resurfaced. However, just doing an x-ray should reveal that right away.
My recommendation is that she see her dentist and ask him to x-ray the root canaled tooth. If there is an infection there it will show up. If there is not an infection there, then it will not be the cause of her salivary gland infection.
If her root canal treatment has failed, she should be aware that each successive retreatment has a lower chance of success. That doesn’t mean it won’t succeed, just that the percentages are lower. This is because sometimes there are canals that just cannot be reached. Each tooth is different and the canals are unique. Some are at angles that both hide them and make them impossible to completely clean out.
If that happens, she may end up having to have the tooth extracted. That’s not ideal and would be considered a last resort. If that does happen, I would recommend a dental implant as the best replacement possible.
This blog is brought to you by Gross Pointe Woods Dentist Dr. Patel.