If you have a tooth that is suffering from extensive decay or damage, your dentist may refer you to an endodontist. Did you know that endodontists have been called the superheroes of dentistry? Here’s how an endodontist can save your tooth.
What is an Endodontist?
Endodontists are dentists who specialize in saving teeth. Like regular dentists, they complete 4 years of dental school, but endodontists also dedicate an extra 2 or 3 years to studying how to treat the conditions that can affect the innermost part of your tooth called the pulp or root.
Endodontists are sometimes called the superheroes of dentistry because all that additional education and training makes them experts at saving teeth that might otherwise require extraction.
What Will an Endodontist Do?
How an endodontist can save your tooth depends on the condition or disease affecting your tooth, but usually an endodontist will perform a root canal. A root canal is a procedure that is similar to how a regular dentist treats a cavity, except that it goes deeper. Endodontists have special tools that can help them to see the microscopic inner part of the affected tooth, remove damage and infection, and clean it.
Once the damaged or infected pulp is removed, the tooth is ready for the endodontist to restore it, typically with what is called a crown. Dental crowns are caps that look like a natural tooth and are used to help seal and protect your tooth from future damage.
Will it Hurt?
If thinking about the idea of having a root canal procedure makes you feel nervous, that’s totally normal. It may help to know that endodontists are specialists in pain management, so root canal procedures performed by endodontists rarely cause discomfort. Also, while regular dentists typically perform 2 to 3 root canals weekly, endodontists perform an average of 25 every week, so when you see an endodontist you’re receiving the utmost expertise.
When Should I See an Endodontist?
If your dentist has talked about the possibility of an extraction or has recommended that you see an endodontist, you should make an appointment right away to find out how an endodontist can save your tooth. Or if you have a tooth that is causing severe discomfort or appears significantly damaged, it’s a good idea to call an endodontist to ask questions and schedule a consultation. When your tooth is at risk of being lost or you are experiencing discomfort, urgency matters. Seeing an endodontist as soon as possible can help to ensure the best possible outcome for your tooth.
Call our Lee's Summit dental office to make an appointment with a dentist who may be able to help you find out more about this topic, and improve your oral health.