what is endodontics?
Endodontics is a branch of dentistry recognized by the American Dental Association involving treatment of the pulp (root canal) and surrounding tissues of the tooth. When you look at your tooth in the mirror, what you see is the crown. The rest of the tooth, the portion hidden beneath the gum line, is called the root. Though the outer portion of the root is a hard tissue called dentin, the inside channel or “root canal” contains a pulp of soft tissue, blood vessels and nerves. Bacteria that are introduced into the pulp as a result of tooth decay, periodontal disease, tooth fracture or other problems, can severely damage the pulp. When that happens, an endodontic specialist removes the diseased pulp to save the tooth and prevent further infection and inflammation. After successful endodontic treatment, the tooth continues to perform normally.
what is an endodontist?
Endodontists are dentist who have completed at least three additional years of advanced education in root canal treatment. Their additional training focuses on diagnosing tooth pain and performing root canal treatment and other procedures relating to the interior of the tooth. As specialists, endodontists specifically perform root canal treatment and associated procedures. These include complex root canal therapy and re-treatment of existing root canals.
why do I need endodontic (root canal) treatment?
Root canal treatment is a way to help you save your natural tooth (see Procedures). You may need a root canal treatment for a variety of reasons, sometimes even for more than one reason.
I’M worried about x-rays. Should I be?
No. While x-rays will be necessary during your endodontics treatment, we use an advanced non-film computerized system, called digital radiography, that produces radiation levels up to 90 percent lower than those of already low dose conventional dental x-ray machinery. These digital images can be optimized, archived, printed and sent via e-mail or diskette. For more information contact Schick Technologies, Inc.
What about infection?
Again, there’s no need for concern. We adhere to the most rigorous standards of infection control advocated by OSHA, the Centers for Disease Control and the American Dental Association. We utilize autoclave sterilization and barrier techniques to eliminate any risk of infection.
HOW LONG DOES A ROOT CANAL TREATMENT TAKE?
Each case is unique; however, on average a root canal treatment takes 90 minutes to 2 hours to complete.
HOW MANY APPOINTMENTS ARE NEEDED?
Depending on the unique situation of every case, 2 to 3 appointments may be needed to complete a root canal treatment
WHAT happens after treatment?
When your root canal therapy has been completed, a record of your treatment will be sent to your general dentist. You should contact your general dentist’s office for a follow-up restoration within a few weeks of completion at our office. Your general dentist will decide on what type of restoration is necessary to protect your tooth. It is rare for endodontic patients to experience complications after routine endodontic treatment. If a problem does occur, however, we are available at all times to respond.