“You need a root canal!” These five little words can turn sunshine into a cloudy day. Even President Obama compared its popularity to the bailout in 2008 on national television. But like many legends and fables that were designed to scare children or tell a tale of caution, recent advances in dental technology and the rise of dental specialists known as endodontists have transformed root canal treatments to become a walk in the park in saving teeth painlessly.
Endodontists are highly skilled dentists who specialize in diagnosing and treating tooth pain, and performing root canal treatment. Along with two to three years of advanced training beyond dental school, endodontists have incredible precision and hand-eye coordination, making them experts in performing complex treatments. No one is better at saving your natural teeth.
Starting with a 3D CBCT scan, patients can directly see and understand what is happening in their own mouth. We can show you exactly where the infection is and discuss a treatment plan.
If the needle is your kryptonite, there are a combination of tools that can help. For starters, a specialized topical anesthetic will be applied to make sure you don’t feel the initial penetration of the needle. Then, a cordless, handheld device called the DentalVibe sends soothing pulses into the oral cavity using revolutionary VibraPulse technology while anesthesia injections are administered. The vibrations disrupt brain signals and block the feeling of the injection, leaving patients with a painless and stress-free experience. For those of you who need something extra to cope with the stress, nitrous or laughing gas can be administered to make your entire treatment more pleasant.
Next is the surgical microscope. The combination of high-powered magnification (20x) and a strong LED light enhances the ability to see down into root canals and help identify any additional canals and/or cracks in the tooth. The new generation of nickel titanium files are more flexible and fracture resistant, allowing the operator to clean the root canal system better and ever before.
Where our nickel titanium files cannot physically reach or thoroughly clean, the endodontist uses dental lasers. One such laser is the Fotona laser which induces acoustic waves inside the canals for better cleaning, resulting in reduced pain and shortened recovery times for the patient.
With these advanced technologies, an experienced endodontist can often complete a treatment in one visit and in under an hour. This reduces the number of visits and post-op discomfort one used to experience decades ago. Today’s treatments tend to be painless and short with quick recovery. When it comes to saving your natural teeth, the endodontist is the ideal choice.
Peter S. Chen, DMD, MMSc
Endodontist, Owner & CEO
Learn more: ineedarootcanal.com