What is Endodontics?
Endodontics is a branch of dentistry recognized by the American Dental Association involving diagnosis and 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 tooth is a hard tissue, the inside channel or “root canal” contains the pulp (the soft tissue, blood vessels and nerves). Bacteria that are introduced into the pulp as a result of tooth decay, trauma, 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 inflammation and infection. After successful endodontic treatment, the tooth continues to function normally.
I’m worried about x-rays. Should I be?
No. While x-rays will be necessary during your endodontic treatment, we use an advanced non-film computerized system, called digital radiography, which produces radiation levels up to 90 percent lower than those of already low dose conventional dental x-ray machinery. These digital images can be archived, printed and emailed.
What about infection control?
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.
What happens after treatment?
When your root canal therapy has been completed, final radiographs and a treatment report will be sent to your dentist. You will need to contact their office as soon as possible to schedule an appointment to have your tooth restored. Your 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 however, if a problem does occur we are always available to respond.