Endodontic FAQ

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.

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, that produces radiation levels significantly lower than those of already low dose conventional dental x-ray machinery. These digital images can be optimized, archived, printed and sent to other providers electronically. For more information contact Carestream Dental, LLC.

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.

What happens after treatment?

When your root canal therapy has been completed, a record of your treatment will be sent to your restorative/general dentist. You should contact his or her office for a follow-up restoration (filling and/or crown) within a few weeks of completion at our office.This appoinment is vital to the recovery and longevity of your tooth.  The quality of your root canal is only as good as the restorative seal that is placed on the crown of the tooth.  Your restorative/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 or microsurgery. If a problem does occur please call our office.

Surgical Operating Microscopes:

In addition to digital radiography, we utilize special surgical operating microscopes. These microscopes provide magnification and fiber optic illumination which are helpful in aiding the doctor to see tiny details inside your tooth. The microscope is instrumental in locating extra canals, identifying cracks and fractures, negotiating calcified canals, and in the removal of posts and other objects found within the root canal system.