What is endodontics?
Endodontics is a branch of dentistry recognized by the American Dental Association involving treatment of the pulp (root canal) and surrounding tissues of the tooth. When you look at your tooth in the mirror, what you see is the crown. The rest of the tooth, the portion hidden beneath the gum line, is called the root. The outer portion of the root is a hard tissue called dentin, but the inside channel or “root canal” contains a pulp of soft tissue, blood vessels and nerves. Bacteria that are introduced into the pulp as a result of tooth decay, periodontal disease, tooth fracture or other problems can severely damage the pulp. When the pulp is damaged, an endodontic specialist removes the diseased pulp to save the tooth and prevent further infection and inflammation. After successful endodontic treatment, the tooth continues to perform normally.
Should I be worried about X-rays at Robert Sopko Endodontics?
No. X-rays will be necessary during your endodontics treatment. We use an advanced non-film computerized system, called digital radiography, that produces radiation levels up to 90 percent lower than those of already low dose conventional dental x-ray machinery. These digital images can be optimized, archived, printed and sent to cotherapists via e-mail or DVD.
Should I worry about infection?
No. At Robert Sopko Endodontics, we adhere to the most rigorous standards of infection control advocated by OSHA, the Centers for Disease Control and the American Dental Association. We utilize autoclave sterilization and barrier techniques to eliminate any risk of infection.
What happens after treatment?
When you’ve completed your root canal therapy, a record of your treatment will be sent to your restorative dentist. If a temporary restoration was placed in our office, you should contact your dentist to schedule a permanent restoration upon completion of endodontic treatment. Your restorative dentist will decide on what type of restoration is necessary to protect your tooth. It is rare for endodontic patients to experience complications after routine endodontic treatment or microsurgery. However, If a problem does occur, we are available to respond immediately.
What new technologies are being used?
In addition to digital radiography, we utilize special cutting edge operating microscopes. Magnification and fiber optic illumination aid the doctor in seeing tiny details inside your tooth. A tiny video camera on the operating microscope records high definition images of your tooth to visually document the doctor’s findings.