Endodontics is a dental speciality that focuses on treating the 'pulp' inside your teeth. The most common form of endodontic therapy is root canal surgery, something that an estimated 22.3 million patients undergo every year. Most general dentists offer these procedures, but it's a good idea to visit an endodontic specialist instead—and here's why.
You'll benefit from a higher standard of endodontic training.
All dentists are highly trained professionals. To qualify as an endodontist, however, a dentist needs to spend a further two years studying the field once they've completed their standard dentistry qualifications.
Once they've left school, there's more opportunity to gain experience in the field, too: the American Association of Endodontists estimates that endodontists usually perform nearly 25 root canal treatments a week, while general dentists perform less than two. It's that access to practice and experience that makes specialised endodontic treatment such an excellent choice for anyone who needs a root canal.
Your surgery will have a higher chance of success.
As with all medical procedures, not all root canal treatment goes smoothly. It's estimated that root canal treatments have a 68-85% success rate when performed by general dentists—but when performed by a specialised endodontist, that raises to 95%. That's a pretty big jump—and it's one of the most compelling arguments for choosing an endodontist over a general dentist for your root canal procedure.
Endodontists have more access to better equipment.
The office of a general dentist must be prepared for all eventualities, which means that they don't have the space or the budget to use the best equipment for all of them. Because endodontists are specialists, their space and budget are entirely devoted to endodontics.
This means that they have access to things like the cone-beam CT, which is a recent innovation in endodontic dentistry. It's machines like these that will increase the chances of your procedure being a success and make it far less likely that you'll need to return for re-treatment.
If you'd like to visit an endodontist, there are two ways you can get an appointment. Your first port of call should be to ask your general dentist to refer you, but if they are reluctant or if you'd rather not have to wait there are other options. Start by talking to local specialists such as Inner West Endodontics to find an endodontist to treat your root canal. You can learn more about the procedure, costs, and recovery time.