Can My General Dentist Do My Root Canals?

It seems you have been blessed (or more like cursed) with an infected root canal, so now what? The first step would be to seek medical attention from your dentist. Although a general dentist practice is able to perform root canals, in some instances, it may be wise to consult with a specialist as well.

An endodontist specializes in dental endodontic procedures such as problems with the roots and pulp of the tooth. While all dentists go through training in endodontic therapy and diagnosis, more complex cases are usually referred to an endodontic specialist. From there an endodontic will be able to better understand and find the best way to preserve tooth function and alleviate pain. They are able to perform the surgery needed to fix a tooth that may not have completely been fixed or heal completely after a root canal. They also can perform apicoectomies which extracts the tip of the roots on a tooth. Not everything that they can accomplish is to address decay or infection, they also can saved damaged teeth that may have been caused by an accident or a crack in the tooth. 

While your general dentist could, or may, perform the root canal, most dentists will refer their patients to an endodontist to help with their pain and suffering through their extensive training and background. They are in school for an extra two years after their dental education to make sure they are well versed in their field. When seeing an endodontist know that you are getting a specifically trained professional that will typically have more experience with advanced technology that is created for ensuring patient comfort, increasing results and to streamline the process. American Association of Endodontists has found through studies that while general dentists will, on average, perform 2 root canals a week, an endodontic can average on 25 per week. Their levels of experience in the field results in a smoother and much more comfortable procedure. As they say “Practice makes perfect”. 

When visiting your general dentist, it is highly likely that, if they believe you need a specialist for treatment or evaluation, they will refer you to an endodontist. Typically your dentist and the referral will work together to address the dental issues that have arisen and will find a healthy and long term solution to your root canal problems. Your dentist still has an important job, with keeping your teeth and gums healthy, but also be the first source if any root or other problematic issues should come up. Dentists, whether general practice or a specialist, are your team effort and support to making sure your teeth and gums are healthy. You can also help them by making sure to brush and floss regularly at home and going in for regular dental checkups. This can help to reduce your risk of gum disease, serious dental issues and of course cavities. 

If you have been experiencing dental pain, and think you may have an infected root canal, call Mark Dreyer, DMD and his team today for an appointment on your Orlando root canal