Endodontics refers to that discipline in dentistry that deals with maintaining the health of the living tissues inside a tooth (pulp) and preventing infection of the surrounding tissues. Where infection is already present, the aim is to resolve it and restore the tooth to a good appearance and function.
As other structures in the facial, head and neck region may mimic toothache, an endodontist can play an important role in making an accurate diagnosis and undertake appropriate clinical procedures. Where the problem may be non – odontogenic in origin (ie. not tooth related) an appropriate referral to a Pain Specialist can be made.
One of the most common therapies performed by an endodontist is Root Canal Treatment.
How is endodontic therapy performed?
Root canal therapy is routinely done in one or two visits. After an examination, which includes x-rays, a diagnosis will be made and treatment options will be presented. If endodontic treatment is elected, a local anesthetic is then administered. The tooth is isolated with a thin sheet of rubber (rubber dam) to protect your throat from fluids and debris. How does endodontic treatment save my tooth?
During endodontic treatment, the damaged or infected pulp is removed. After carefully cleaning and shaping the inside of the tooth, this space is then filled and sealed. Following a root canal, your dentist will place a crown or other restoration to protect and restore it to full function.
“Endo” is the Greek word for “inside” and “odont” is Greek for “tooth.”
A small opening is made through the chewing surface of the tooth which allows access to the tooth’s pulp chamber and root canals. After determining the length of the canals, they are enlarged and cleaned with small instruments and disinfectants. Your endodontist fills and seals the canal space with a material called gutta-percha. A temporary filling is then placed in the access opening.