Root Canal Therapy: Should You Visit Your Dentist or an Endodontist?

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woman taking root canal treatment from our dentist

If it has just been brought to your attention that there is an issue with the pulp of your tooth, you most likely will require root canal therapy. With that in mind, your next step would be to determine if you should visit a dentist in Dearborn to perform the procedure or an endodontist. Ultimately, the decision is yours. However, two key determining factors are the type of tooth infected and the shape of its roots. Before coming to any decision, first, let’s discuss how a dentist near you and an endodontist differ.

How does an endodontist differ from a dentist?

Right now, you might think, “Well, what is an endodontist?” Although every endodontist is a dentist, under three percent of dentists are endodontists. Both a dentist and orthodontist have graduated from dental school. Many orthodontists begin in general practice at the start of their dental careers. An endodontist must acquire at least two or more years of specialized training in diagnosing tooth pain and conducting procedures relating to the tooth’s interior.

So now to the next question….” Is an endodontist only qualified to perform root canal therapy in Dearborn? The answer is not. A general dentist near you is skilled in performing root canal therapy and equipped with the correct tools and training to complete most procedures successfully. However, with that said, there are cases in which even a dentist who regularly performs root canal therapy near you will refer a patient to an endodontist.

Why would you be referred to an endodontist?

Your dentist may refer you to an endodontist for successful treatment when the infected tooth has a complex root canal system. It involves locating and cleaning all the canals within the patient’s tooth. Sometimes, the molars or premolars have slender canals that are obstructed or challenging to find, despite high-powered microscopes and imaging systems. Additionally, root canal systems with complex anatomies are difficult to clean through standard treatment. In cases such as those listed above, your dentist may conclude to refer you to an endodontist, as they generally have more experience when it comes to threatening complex root canal systems.

All About Root Canal Therapy

Root canal treatment is a procedure that professionals carry out every day. Before you undergo any dental treatment, learning the facts about root canal therapy is important. Here is some additional information.

Will receiving root canal therapy hurt?

When you visit a dental clinic near you for root canal therapy, your dentist will administer anesthesia. It means root canal therapy won’t be more painful than a regular dental procedure such as a dental filling.

How do I know if I need a root canal?

Typically, patients learn they require root canal therapy when they have noticed that their teeth are sensitive, especially to hot and cold sensations. In terms of symptoms, you may require a root canal if:

  • You have severe pain when you bite or chew something
  • You have pimples on your gums
  • You have a chipped or cracked tooth
  • You experience lingering sensitivity to hold or cold, even once the sensation has been removed
  • Your gums are swollen or tender
  • You have extensive decay
  • Your gums have darkened

Can I go back to work or school after receiving a root canal?

While you may be numb for 2-4 hours after the procedure, most patients can return to school or work directly following root canal therapy. Our dentist will advise you to refrain from returning to school or work directly after root canal therapy. You are also advised not to eat until the numbness has dissipated.