Endodontics Q & A
What is endodontics?
Endodontics is a branch of dentistry that deals with the complex structures found in the teeth. The Greek word endodontics means “inside the tooth” and relates to the tooth pulp, tissues, nerves, and arterioles.
Dentists who have trained in endodontics receive additional dental training after completing dental school to enable them to perform both complex and simple procedures, including root canal therapy.
In almost all cases, endodontic treatment is performed to save your natural tooth. In spite of the many advanced restoration procedures available, most dentists agree that there is no substitute for healthy, natural teeth.
Do I need endodontic treatment?
Dr. Lee can assess whether or not you might need root canal therapy or root canal retreatment ― the latter of which is required when a previous root canal therapy has reinfected.
Signs and symptoms of endodontic problems may include:
- Inflammation and tenderness of the gums
- Teeth that are sensitive to hot and cold foods
- Tenderness when chewing and biting
- Tooth discoloration
- Unexplained pain in the nearby lymph nodes
Oral bacteria is the most common cause of endodontic problems. Bacteria invade the tooth pulp through tiny fissures in the teeth caused by tooth decay or injury. The resulting inflammation and bacterial infection jeopardize the health of the affected tooth and may cause an abscess to form.
Fractures, chips, or injuries can also cause problems that will result in the need for endodontic treatments.
What are the results of endodontic treatment?
Historically, dentists would remove teeth with diseased nerves immediately, but endodontic procedures allow Dr. Lee to save your natural tooth, in most cases.
Root canal therapy sometimes takes between one and three visits to complete. However, Dr. Lee can perform a root canal and crown preparation in a single appointment.
A root canal procedure involves creating a small hole in the tooth through which he can extract the diseased tooth pulp. He then cleans and disinfects the tooth and its roots.
Your healing time will vary, depending on the severity of your problem, but you can expect to regain healthy teeth and gums after endodontic treatment. Proper oral hygiene will be critical to maintaining your results and avoiding further problems later in life.
To learn more about endodontic treatments or to book an appointment with Dr. Lee today, call or use the easy online scheduling tool.