Unless you have been referred to a specialist for a root canal treatment, you may not have heard the term “Endodontics” before now. Even if you have, here are a few interesting things you may not have known about this dental specialty.
- “Endodontics” is taken from two older Greek terms literally meaning “inner tooth.” In the word endodontics, “endo” is a prefix meaning “inner” and “odont” is the root word “tooth.” Endodontic treatment dates back to the 17th century.
- Endodontics focuses on the study, diagnosis, and treatment of the internal structure of the tooth. This can include root canal therapy, apicoectomy, treatment of tooth infections, and more.
- Endodontists start by training as dentists. Prior to obtaining their specialization, an endodontist like our doctor will earn a degree in dentistry. Afterward, they will complete an additional 2-4 years of focused education and training to gain their specialization.
- Root canal treatment preserves a tooth. If you develop an infection in the soft inner tissue of your tooth, antibiotics are not sufficient to treat the issue. Rather than removing your permanent tooth, a root canal treatment will clean out the infection and fill the tooth to protect it from further damage. A single root canal treatment can preserve your tooth for a lifetime.
- Root canal therapy relieves pain. Contrary to popular belief, having root canal treatment is not the cause of the pain that people often associate with it. The infection or trauma that underlies the need for treatment is the cause of the pain. Even though your tooth will likely be tender for a few days, most patients notice significantly reduced sensitivity following treatment.
- Endodontists can help save a tooth following dental trauma. In addition to their expertise in root canal treatment, endodontists receive training in a wide range of dental trauma concerns. In many cases, our doctor may be able to stabilize or reposition an injured tooth to prevent the need for extraction.