While general dentists may have the skills to treat many types of dental problems after earning their Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS) or Doctor of Dental Medicine (DMD) degrees, endodontists aka root canal specialists have to enroll for a few more years of post-graduate training. Endodontics gets its name from the Greek language whereby ‘endo’ means inside and ‘odont’ means tooth. A tooth is a complex structure that has an internal passage referred to as a canal, which contains the pulp – a soft tissue filled with a network of nerves and blood vessels. This area is the primary focus of an endodontist. This specialist conducts root canal treatments and therapy, as well as surgical procedures to heal and save a patient’s tooth.
Reasons to Get Root Canal Treatment from a Board Certified Endodontist
The main difference between a general dentist and a root canal specialist is that the latter undergoes an extra period of training in root canals of about three years. During this time, the endodontist is equipped with better skills for not only diagnosing and treating tooth pain, but also treating infected or damaged teeth
Aside from the extensive supervised training that root canal students undergo during their post-graduate course work, certified endodontists perform multiple root canal treatments and therapy procedures every week as compared to general dentists who perform one or two per week. This greater experience means that the endodontist will be more efficient and have a higher success rate than a general practitioner.
Even though general dentists are highly skilled, root canal specialists frequently perform more complex procedures. In some cases, root canal treatment can involved microsurgery. This involves opening gum tissue near a tooth and removing any infected or inflamed tissues on the underlying bone. In other instances, it is difficult to diagnose the source of tooth pain – even with the use of x-rays – and microscopic surgery may be required to help pinpoint the problem. Another issue can involve root canals that have reduced in size due to reasons such as age. Such a problem requires a specialist to address the unique issues that come along with smaller access to treat the root.
Root Canal Treatment Expertise
When it comes to root canal treatment expertise, endodontists beat general dentists because this is the sole focus of their work. Endodontists have put in a lot of hours in post-graduate training and in their clinics to master the art. Statistics show that endodontists have a higher treatment success rate for root canal treatment procedures than general dentists. Unfortunately, sometimes a general dentist has to send their patient to an endodontist due to a failed root canal procedure. Re-treatments – which involve repeating root canal treatments – are therefore necessary to end a patient’s discomfort.
In any profession, if you are doing specialized work, then you are bound to have more specialized tools than a general practitioner in Boca Raton. That’s the case with endodontists. Their work requires greater magnification equipment and specialized tools to help them assess and treat root canal problems. Looking at all the reasons listed, it is clear that both a general dentist and an endodontist are well-trained and equipped to treat your dental problems. However, while a general dentist can treat most of your problems, specialized dental work will require the skills of an endodontist.