Your toothy smile isn’t just the pretty white crowns that you see when you look in a mirror. Underneath that enamel lives a network of little canals that comprise the living tissue of the tooth, complete with blood vessels and nerves to nourish it and keep it alive. This inner network, known as the pulp is the part of the tooth that an endodontist specializes in treating.
Most of the time you will be focusing on keeping your teeth and gums healthy with your dental hygiene practices. These daily efforts, along with bi-annual dental visits usually help to maintain good oral health. But sometimes things go wrong with the inner workings of your teeth and if that’s the case, you’ll likely know it because it is painful. At that stage where you feel pain from inflammation in the pulp, some damage has already been done. Your endodontist may be the only thing standing between you and your tooth pain.
Your endodontist can treat the soft tissues of the tooth to relieve pain and infection in the pulp tissue using root canal therapy to save the tooth from extraction. You want your endodontist to be as qualified as possible to help you save damaged teeth and keep the tooth alive and healthy. They can also perform endodontic surgery, apicoectomies, and treat patients who have been referred by a general dentist.
Board-certified endodontists not only graduate with a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university, but they must also graduate from an accredited dental school after completing two to three years of postgraduate training as a licensed Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS), or Doctor of Dental Medicine (DMD). Next, your endodontist must pass a written and clinical exam to become licensed and two years in residency training to complete their residency. After getting a license to practice in their state, they must stay up to date in their field with an ongoing and continued education.
A successful endodontist must possess other qualities, including an eye for details and exceptional manual dexterity. Having critical thinking skills and good hand-eye coordination combined with strong interpersonal skills and the ability to make quick decisions is also valuable.
And finally, unlike a dentist who may only perform one or two root canals a week, an endodontist performs this treatment many times a week, giving them a lot of experience, expertise and skill in this area. To help them perform the highly complex procedures necessary to save your tooth from severe decay or trauma, they also have the latest state-of-the-art equipment to treat you comfortably and effectively.
If you have further questions about endodontics or would like to schedule an appointment with our board-certified doctor, we invite you to give us a call today to speak with a member of our dedicated team. We look forward to seeing you at our office and helping you achieve a stronger and healthier smile!