WHAT IS AN ENDODONTIST?
If this is your first time being referred to an Endodontist for care, you may be wondering what exactly an Endodontist is. An Endodontist is a dentist who has specialized in root canals and root canal related procedures. An Endodontist treats dental issues that involve the tooth pulp, which is a tissue located in the middle of a tooth that contains nerves, blood vessels, lymphatic tissue, and fibrous tissue. If the dental pulp becomes injured, infected, or diseased, treatment is required to save the tooth. This treatment is called endodontic treatment, or more commonly, a root canal. While root canals have gotten a bad reputation over the years, modern endodontic treatment is efficient, minimally invasive, and very comfortable. Endodontists are skilled in making endodontic treatment an enjoyable experience.
Endodontists are highly educated. After completing four years of dental school, Endodontists complete an additional two years of residency via a postgraduate specialty program, either though a hospital or an accredited university-based program. During this residency, they are taught all aspects of endodontic care. They spend time treating patients, servicing local hospitals and dental clinics, volunteering their services, and doing cutting-edge research on advancements in Endodontics.
At the completion of their training and education, Endodontists are highly trained and skilled in performing all aspects of endodontic therapy. This includes:
- Diagnosis and treatment of dental pain and toothaches. While many toothaches require endodontic treatment, not every problem requires endodontic care, and Endodontists are specially trained to find the source of the problem, so it can be managed appropriately.
- Routine and complex root canals. Endodontists are trained to do root canals on every tooth in the mouth, in a predictable and reliable fashion.
- Retreatments of previous root canals. Sometimes root canals fail, and Endodontists are trained to find the underlying issue in order to re-do the root canal and promote healing.
- Endodontic surgery. Endodontists are trained in a wide variety of surgical techniques, including root amputations, apicoectomy, and root hemi-sections. They are also trained in biopsies, bone-grafting, and membrane placement.
- Dental trauma management. When patients have serious dental trauma, it is very common for the treatment plan to require the expertise of an Endodontist in order to restore the dentition to a healthy state.
- Management of fractured or cracked teeth. Unfortunately, when teeth crack, if the crack extends inward to the nerve, the tooth often requires endodontic care. An Endodontist is trained to locate even microscopic cracks and help treat them.
- Internal bleaching. Discoloration arising from trauma or old filling materials can be corrected in the hands of an Endodontist.
- Vital pulp therapies for adults and children. Even young patients may require a minimally-invasive endodontic treatment to help teeth with large cavities last a lifetime.
Endodontists use state-of-the-art technology. Here at Advanced Perio Endo eXperts, our office offers dental operating microscopes, which are used on every procedure, as well as fiber optics, digital radiographs, three-dimensional cone beam computed tomography (CBCT), Nitrous Oxide analgesia, and ultrasonic instrumentation. This advanced technology, coupled with their specialized techniques, give Endodontists a more advanced understanding of tooth anatomy. This allows them to treat the tooth quickly and comfortably.
Endodontic treatment is extremely common. It is estimated that every year, over 22 million endodontic procedures are performed! Endodontists treat thousands of teeth annually and have chosen to perform these procedures exclusively. Dr. Newman routinely does 30-40 endodontic treatments in a single week, and has been in practice for a decade, so you can put faith in her experience.
When you and your general dentist choose an Endodontist like Dr. Newman to be part of your dental team, you are choosing to pursue the best quality care for your mouth. Your dentist has referred you to Advanced Perio Endo eXperts because they care about the quality of work you get done, and want to ensure you have the best possible treatment with the best long-term prognosis and success. By choosing to receive specialized treatment from an Endodontist, you are choosing to keep your natural teeth as a healthy foundation for years to come.
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