The name Endodontist derives from the Greek, endo meaning ‘inside’, and dontic, meaning ‘tooth’. Endodontists are dentists with a specialization in tooth pain and the roots of teeth. Their advanced skills focus on the interior of teeth and the tooth’s root canals. Your dentist may refer you to an endodontist for root canal treatment.
An endodontist focuses solely on the pulp of the tooth and problems relating to the tooth’s interior. Endodontists specialize in saving teeth. With their help, even teeth with considerable decay, cracks or breaks can be brought back to be healthy, fully functioning teeth.
What would a patient need to see an endodontist?
Much of the diagnosis and treatment of teeth can be carried out at your dental office, including root canal treatment. Occasionally however, a more specialized practitioner is required to identify the source of tooth, oral or facial pain and carry out detailed treatment needed to fix the problem. If your diagnosis carries complications, your dentist will always refer you to the practitioner best skilled to deal with your particular set of circumstances.
Why is my dentist referring me to an endodontist?
Your dentist will refer you to an endodontist if they believe the treatment you require warrants a more specialized practitioner. While dentists often carry out root canal treatment in their office, sometimes your diagnosis involves administering specialized treatment, which an endodontist is better qualified to address. Your dentist will always err on the side of caution, and ensure you are being treated by the practitioner, and technician best suited and most qualified to fulfill your needs.
What does an endodontist do?
Endodontists pride themselves on having the ability to save teeth. Your dentist will always strive to save a tooth rather than extract it, and an endodontist is the dental specialist, most knowledgeable and skilled in this area of dentistry. While dentists perform, on average 2 to 3 root canals a week in their dental office, endodontists perform around 25. With their detailed understanding of the tooth’s interior, root, and pulp, the chances of your treatment being a success in the long term are greatly improved. Endodontists perform not just root canal treatment, but also a range of other procedures to rescue teeth, which may otherwise fall out or require extraction.
What does an endodontist do apart from root canal?
Another procedure performed by an endodontist is an apicoectomy. Root canal treatment is successful in over 90% of cases, though on occasion, complications can arise which result in the root of the tooth becoming reinfected. As is always the case, your dentists will aim to save the teeth before resorting to extraction. An apicoectomy gains access to the root of the tooth, with a careful incision in the gum, to eradicate infection occurring at the tip or apex of the root.